6.2. Strengthen sustainability policies.
By elevating the environmental profile of public spaces, the County has an opportunity to lead by example and preserve and conserve natural resources. Incorporating best sustainability practices into park and recreational facility maintenance can limit the County’s environmental footprint, reduce costs, and serve as a model to other organizations and citizens.
6.2.1. Optimize operations and maintenance standards to ensure sustainability.
6.2.2. Target waste reduction, recycling, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, reduced energy usage and reduced water consumption.
6.2.3. Conduct pilot projects of innovative sustainability measures to test their effectiveness for County-wide implementation.
As new sustainability programs or initiatives are developed, the County can test them on a small-scale pilot project basis to determine their value in terms of effectiveness and resource conservation. Successful programs could then be implemented County-wide.
6.2.4. Continue to utilize native plant species and water-wise plant materials.
Native plant species are adapted to the local climate and provide critical wildlife habitat while generally requiring less watering and maintenance to thrive.
6.2.5. Continue to enhance non-native invasive species management as recommended in the Natural Resources Management Plan (see also 3.3.4.).
Non-native invasive species are detrimental to the local ecology by competing with native species for resources and disrupting established ecological cycles.
6.2.6. Make use of available planting spaces for trees and other vegetation on public lands such as traffic islands and curb bump-outs while ensuring clear and adequate sight lines for drivers, cyclists, or pedestrians.
6.2.7. Use environmentally friendly products — including cleaners and chemical treatments — where feasible.
6.2.8. Continue to educate staff and the public on the County’s sustainability efforts and on environmental practices they can employ themselves.
6.2.9. Stay up to date with sustainability best practices and incorporate innovative strategies.
6.2.10. Consider design and maintenance measures (like snow removal) that can accommodate more year-round use of trails and other public spaces.