DEFINE IT

What does sustainability mean to you?

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  1. Remove Some RFK Parking Lots - Replace with Youth SportsPlex and Green Space

    The RFK Parking Lots are one of the biggest sources of stormwater pollution into the Anacostia. The National Capital Planning Commission has recommended using the northern parking lots for athletic fields and green space. There is not enough space for youth (and adult) sports - soccer, baseball, football, etc. DC should rip out the asphalt lots and replace with usable green space and fields.

    2,153 votes
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      42 comments  ·  Water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
    • Promote Residential Solar Installations by Offering Solar Rebates

      The District's Renewable Energy Incentive Program has been a huge success in spawning adoption of locally produced energy - more than 400 projects so far. The program will expire this year. DC should renew the program for an additional 4 years to continue promoting solar installations. The funding is in place from energy bill surcharges, but the DC Council has not renewed the program past 2012. Solar is becoming more affordable, but small rebates can push the return on investment down from about 10 years to 6 years -- making it more likely that solar installs in DC will continue…

      334 votes
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        3 comments  ·  Energy  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
      • More distinguished bath paths separated from the main road.

        Yes, this requires a bit of infrastructure development, but having a separate bike path just off the road will improve safety significantly. That way we don't have to worry about sharing the road with the cars (or vice versa).

        285 votes
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          2 comments  ·  Transportation  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
        • Create a District Conservation Corps program

          ...that provides career and leadership training for young people interested in environmental careers and Rock Creek/Anacostia/Potomac protection. The program could be modeled after the Chesapeake Conservation Corps which matches young people, ages 18-25, with organizations throughout the state of Maryland for paid, one-year terms of service. In its inaugural year, Corps Volunteers worked on a variety of environmental initiatives including energy efficiency programs, restoration activities and clean-ups, water quality monitoring programs, reforestation projects and job training programs for youth. http://www.chesapeake-bay.org/index.php/08-2011/29/21-new-participants-admitted-to-chesapeake-conservation-corps/

          268 votes
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            10 comments  ·  Green Economy  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
          • More affordable housing

            A sustainable DC is one that looks at reducing the average energy consumption of all people who live and work in DC, including those who live outside the district boundary and commute in. To reduce their carbon footprint, we need to make it possible for them to live closer to their jobs by increasing the supply of affordable housing (and all types of housing) in the city. In general, someone living close to a downtown job will use less energy for transportation and also live in a smaller, more energy efficient home than someone who lives farther out. Bringing people…

            179 votes
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              6 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
            • 169 votes
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                2 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
              • More green roof tops so we have more vegetation on our roofs!

                Green roofs are partially or completely covered with vegetation and a growing medium, planted over a waterproofing membrane. It may also include additional layers such as a root barrier and drainage and irrigation systems.

                They absorb rainwater, provide insulation, create a habitat for wildlife, help to lower urban air temperatures and combat the heat island effect. Imagine if all DC roof tops were green!

                You can check out some of the green roof projects already happening in the DC area here - http://www.dcgreenworks.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=30&Itemid=59

                158 votes
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                  7 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                • White roofs as building code - black roofs cause 10% greater heating costs

                  Commercial buildings should all have reflective white roofs, and this should be required by building code. There is a substantial and immediate savings in air conditioning costs. Even
                  better is a 'green roof', with plantings to absorb the rainfall - but this requires a stronger
                  support structure. At least don't paint any more roofs black. That would be free.

                  156 votes
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                    4 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                  • Power purchase agreement for solar on all DCPS roofs

                    Two years ago DC Public Schools was close to signing up for solar on all its roofs - $2 million worth - that would have been free to DC taxpayers. The installer 'owns' the panels, gets the depreciation and tax advantages, and sell the electricity to DCPS for less than the PEPCO rate. After the depreciation period (5-7 years), the panels can be donated to DCPS, who gets free use for the remaining 20 years of guaranteed panel life! What a great deal for the taxpayers, the students, and the sustainable DC environment!

                    156 votes
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                      4 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                    • Make our parks and green spaces greener and promote their usage. Invest in our parks.

                      Invest in our parks and green spaces in DC. Make our parks greener and help maintain them! Help promote parks across the city. Help make them come alive for the whole community.

                      126 votes
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                        4 comments  ·  Nature  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                      • Green Taxis (like New York!)

                        New York announced a Green Taxis Act of 2011 which would modify Federal law to give local governments the authority to regulate fuel economy and emissions standards for taxi cabs.

                        DC should make our taxis greener too! A lot of DC taxis are so old and run get 17 mpg. Fuel efficient taxis will improve our air quality and lower carbon emissions while reducing our consumption of foreign oil!

                        Plus Arlington, Va has cool hybrid taxis that "appear to be doing well" according to greatergreaterwashington.org
                        http://greatergreaterwashington.org/tag/hybrid+taxis/

                        106 votes
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                          4 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                        • Selectively increase height limits for mixed-use developments near downtown metro stations

                          Residential towers could be added above existing commercial developments near the Farragut, McPherson and Metro Center stations. These towers would inject these office-heavy neighborhoods with new life, transforming them into round-the-clock, mixed-use neighborhoods. These rare exceptions to the height restrictions would be so attractive to developers that many restrictions could be imposed by the city to ensure that the developments benefited the community at large. They could be required to include amenities such as grocery stores, cultural facilities, low-income housing, wind turbines and more. Formally, the towers could be limited in height and girth and set back to the center…

                          101 votes
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                            7 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                          • 94 votes
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                              1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                            • Programs to get Rooftop Wind on Public Buildings in the District

                              Rooftop Wind is one of the most underutilized forms of decentralized, low-cost, renewable energy in the U.S. The market for rooftop wind has taken off in Europe, but in the U.S., it is relatively unknown. Small, helical-type wind turbines and other designs are quiet, don't harm birds or wildlife, and produce energy where it is used. The District in conjunction with the Federal Government should initiate programs to put rooftop wind structures on public buildings, thereby setting an example for the whole District and the rest of the country.

                              80 votes
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                                1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                              • Stop noisy, polluting leaf blowers! Rakes and brooms are sustainable

                                Leaf blowers are two-cycle motors that pollute almost as much as an automobile! Plus the high-pitched whine resonates for blocks. What happened to sustainable rake and broom work? We are destroying our current environment by the noise and our future environment by the pollution. If I were king for a day, I'd ban leaf blowers from DC forever.

                                75 votes
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                                  4 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                • incentives for solar water heating - both commercial and residential

                                  Solar water heating systems pay for themselves in 3-6 years, then provide free hot water and quarterly payments for the renewable energy credits for 20 more years or more! What a great investment. If there were a group purchase and a DC rebate program, plus a well-run publicity campaign, we could make a big impact on DC energy use and on the water heating bills of many citizens. It is especially good deal for folks who are not wealthy, who pay a larger portion of their income for water heating.

                                  65 votes
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                                    3 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                  • clean rivers and green space

                                    We will be able to fish and swim in the Anacostia and Potomac rivers! Or, at least our city will contribute to their restoration and make sure that none of our raw sewage or pesticides end up there... Everyone in the city will have access to safe green spaces where they can spend time outside and observe natural systems at work.

                                    64 votes
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                                      2 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                    • How about municipal composting too?

                                      Many cities are building industrial compost plants to break down organic wastes like food scraps and yard waste and collecting it separately from trash and recyclable goods. Plus a municipal compost plant will break down those supposedly "compostable" containers that remain as inert as plastic in landfills.

                                      62 votes
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                                        1 comment  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                      • Reduce light pollution

                                        Most street lamps are exposed to the night sky - ensure there are strict policies mandate the use of sky friendly lighting. With quality outdoor lighting, the nighttime sky and night environment are just as much a part of our lifestyle and history as are the daylight hours.

                                        62 votes
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                                          3 comments  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
                                        • Stop watering sidewalks to clean them - use a broom!

                                          Each time I walk to work in the morning, there are people spraying fresh, clean, drinkable water on the sidewalks. While the City, its citizens, and its companies enjoy cleanliness, this is such a wasteful use of a very limited, but essential, global resource. I am confident that we can be just as neat and tidy through less water-intensive processes. Let's try brooms on our sidewalks! Vote here if you agree.

                                          62 votes
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                                            0 comments  ·  Water  ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
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