By looking at case studies such as the many "Transition Towns" already making the transition to a sustainable future we can most easily find ways to bring those aspects here. Community gardens, more bike lanes and sidewalks, a large-scale composting facility, using local resources as much as possible, perform energy audits on existing structures, passive solar design, rain barrels, etc.Tax breaks would be a good incentive for the green builders. Other incentives might include encouraging whole neighborhoods to go sustainably green to attract like-minded people looking to move here. Regulators could write into policy contractors must choose energy star product when available or something to that effect.
Economic feasibility is the single most important promoter; if something is worth doing in a certain way, people will do it. Incentives should include tax relief for things we want to attain, and regulations must be reserved for the few things that are outrightly harmful to our population. We are a significantly over-regulated society at this point already.
Improved building codes to raise the minimum allowed energy efficiency standards will lead to a reduction in electricity used and thus improve the air quality in the Triad and save on electricity expenses. Tax incentives for new construction/remodeling of current buildings that incorporate LEED or similar environmentally sustainable building practices will help to promote the use of these best practices. Fast track permitting for “green” construction and remodeling will also increase these practices. Providing incentives for new development that uses infill space close to existing multi-use areas will promote density rather than sprawl.
We need incentives to re-use existing buildings rather than demolishing and starting over.We need more fees for demolishing buildings where materials will go to the landfill
Provide assistance to help people make good choices.Do not regulate, educate.
We need to encourage better the reuse of existing buildings rather than new construction. Incentives could be used for this. Research Park is a successExampleMake FC a model for use of renewable energy - solar, geothermal, water treatment, et al.
Set up community gardens in parksInclude "Open Space" as part of development;Provide Recycling, Composting services or make mandatorySet up "green zones" in redevelopment areas - provide support services for grant writing, tax credit for locating in "green zone". Green zone would require renewable energy, LEED building, green space set aside.
Offer incentives to owners based on savings to infrastructure, mandate all public facilities lead by example, encourage suppliers & contractors that can provide needed elements to locate here, don't discount utility costs to large users-counter productive!
Limit the number of new construction per year to encourage the re-use of existing buildings.Have energy use requirements - like make LEED requirements for commercial buildings.
Connectivity; shared open space - individual yards, enforce energy efficiency codes
Forsyth County needs a tree conservation ordinance, and a stormwater management ordinance
Education on the benefits, education on what sustainable means, including embodied energy in existing structures. Adaptive use should be encouraged, not dismissed - one prime example is our main public library.
City could sell rain barrels to community at bulk rate to encourage water conservation
Historic Preservation/ReuseRehabbing a building that already exists (historical or not) is more environmentally friendly than building new. Why focus on new "sustainable" developments when there are many vacant buildings in the county? Utilize the spaces that are available!
Use tax credits to promote sustainable development
Provide incentives for homeowners.Include gardens in gov't housingOrdinances that allow small scale agricultureTREES should be planted in every parking lot. Milton Rhodes Art Center parking lot is a crime!
Encourage LEED certificationForbid light trespassNO 4 WAY STOPS in residential neighborhoods because it increases air pollution & noise pollution
We should embrace those activities that are promoted by the US Environmental Protection Agency and other similar organizations. http://www.ncipl.org/, http://theregenerationproject.org/, http://www.nccommerce.com/energy, http://www.pewclimate.org/global-warming-basics/climate_change_101, http://www.architecture2030.org/, http://www.repoweramerica.org/, http://www.auduboninternational.org/
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