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Adding Green to Urban Design: A City for Us and Future Generations

November 20, 2008

Adopted by the Chicago Plan Commission in November 2008, this urban planning document presents a detailed implementation strategy for economically sound and environmentally sustainable urban design.  Elements for consideration encompass all areas of the city exposed to the environment from the building exterior to the street - including roofs, facades, yards, landscapes, open spaces, parkways, driveways, sidewalks, alleys, and roadways.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Dallas Urban Heat Island

March 2009

This report describes urban heat island effects on Dallas, Texas, and options that could be implemented to help reduce these effects. It summarizes the goals, costs, benefits, actions, and incentives that Dallas has available to cool the city. These include: (1) expanded use and care of trees and vegetation, (2) cool (reflective) and green roofs, and (3) cool or permeable paving strategies that can help cool the city and address storm water issues.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Toronto Eco-Roof Incentive Program

March 2009

The City of Toronto in Ontario, Canada Eco-Roof Incentive Program provides grants to commercial, industrial and institutional property owners to improve the sustainability of Toronto's infrastructure and its resilience to climate change. Financial incentives are provided for the construction of green roofs that support vegetation and cool roofs that reflect the sun's thermal energy. Launched in 2009, the program supports the City's Climate Change Action Plan and complements the City's 'Green Roof Bylaw' and the 'Green Standard' by encouraging owners of existing buildings to retrofit their roofs.

Resource Category: Funding

 

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Maine Department of Transportation – Bridge Scour Management

Recognizing that climate change will cause changes in precipitation and stream flow, the state of Maine has taken several steps to evaluate the vulnerability of its bridges to scour and implement corrective actions to safeguard those most critical. Among the transportation infrastructure adaptation policies recommended in Maine DOT’s report Climate Change and Transportation in Maine were two scour-related goals: inspecting all bridges at least every two years, and conducting underwater inspections for scour and structural integrity every 60 months.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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Elevated Ventilation Grates for New York City’s Subway System

2009

New York City’s Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) installed raised ventilation grates at 25 different locations throughout the city in order to reduce flooding of their subway system. Similar strategies could be used for underground highway assets, such as tunnels, where ventilation systems are at risk of flooding.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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City of Seattle, Washington Stormwater Code

2009

The City of Seattle, Washington’s stormwater regulations are implemented in order to improve stormwater management for new development in Seattle, including on-site stormwater management. Seattle’s Stormwater Code imposes retention requirements on residential properties.   These requirements vary according to several factors, including the type of sewer system or water body to which the site discharges and the size of the land disturbance or impervious surface on that site.   For example, if a parcel discharges into small lake basins and its total new-plus-replaced impervious surface is 2000 square feet or more, it must manage stormwater from a 25-year rainfall event (a storm that has a 4% chance of occurring in any given year).

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Boulder Green Building and Green Points Program - Boulder, Colorado Municipal Code Chapter 7.5, Ordinance 7565

February 1, 2008

Boulder, Colorado’s municipal building code integrated Ordinance 7565 (Green Building and Green Points Program), which was adopted by Boulder City Council on Nov. 13, 2007 and went into effect on Feb. 1, 2008. The Boulder Green Points Building Program was the nation’s first mandatory residential green building program that requires a builder or homeowner to include a minimum amount of sustainable building components based on the size of the proposed structure. 

Resource Category: Law and Governance

 

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Cool Surfaces and Shade Trees to Reduce Energy Use and Improve Air Quality in Urban Areas

2001

This article, published in Elsevier in 2002, outlines how cool surfaces (cool roofs and cool pavements) and urban trees can have a substantial effect on urban air temperature and, hence, can reduce cooling-energy use and smog. Using a dozen metropolitan cities as case studies, this paper demonstrates an estimate of about 20% of the national cooling demand can be avoided through a large-scale implementation of heat-island mitigation measures. This amounts to 40 TWh/ year savings, worth over $4B per year by 2015, in cooling-electricity savings alone.

Authors or Affiliated Users: H. Akbari, M. Pomerantz, H. Taha

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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EPA Smart Growth Implementation Assistance Program

2005

The Smart Growth Implementation Assistance Program, run by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), helps communities explore opportunities for and barriers to smart growth and pilot innovative ideas that create more sustainable communities.

Resource Category: Planning

 

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Washington D.C. Green Roof Program

2007

In 2003, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation initiated a green roof demonstration project funded under the terms of a consent decree negotiated by the D. C. Water and Sewer Authority. The money was used to issue grants for the installation of eight different pilot green roofs that would reduce the cost of each green roof cost to the building owner by up to 20 percent. The pilot roofs served as models that building owners could use for future green roof projects, by providing data on costs, construction methods, performance, and maintenance needs.

Resource Category: Solutions

 

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