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Sustainable Cuyahoga toolkit: An illustration of how hard it can be

Marc Lefkowitz  |  03/14/16 @ 10:00am  |  Posted in Transform

We have received a lot of positive feedback and questions about the Sustainable Cuyahoga Toolkit released last week by Cuyahoga County’s Department of Sustainability and the GreenCityBlueLake Institute at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

<br />Ian Lockwood uses this language chart to test the assumptions of traffic engineers against community vision.

Sustainable Cuyahoga: A toolkit of recommended best practices for communities in Cuyahoga County

David Beach  |  03/10/16 @ 5:00pm  |  Posted in Transform

In the past few months GreenCityBlueLake has been working with the Cuyahoga County Department of Sustainability on a toolkit of sustainability and environmental best practices for communities. Now the toolkit has been released and is posted on the county website for download. It’s full of practical ideas, links to model policies, and connections to local experts. Check it out and...

Making it easier to be sustainable<br />The Sustainable Cuyahoga toolkit provides great ideas for what local governments can do to facilitate the transition to more sustainable practices, such as renewable energy. (Photo by AAT Solar)

Ten years becoming a Green City on a Blue Lake

Marc Lefkowitz  |  03/03/16 @ 10:00am  |  Posted in Explore, Live, Transform

Looking back over a decade of exploring what makes Cleveland into a green city on a blue lake, we compiled these “greatest hits” — a curated list of the GreenCityBlueLake blog — which we launched in 2006. Conversations advanced and milestones reached, now and then, Cleveland is figuring out how sustainability spreads opportunity.

<br />Critical Mass, a monthly bike ride on the streets of cities including Cleveland, has steadily grown a following of hundreds.<br />Northeast Ohio's first passive house, the PNC SmartHome, was built to respond to the concerns in the Cleveland Museum of Natural History 2011 climate change exhibit.<br />An abandoned home in Cleveland. The $4 million VibrantNeo plan detailed the regional costs to sprawling, haphazard development, and identified a scenario of building vibrant walkable communities.<br />A proposal for a green lane in the sidewalk of Ontario Street would be part of a 4-mile protected bikeway in Cleveland. Image: GreenCityBlueLake.<br />Lake Erie. Image: Greg Slawson; GC Creative Studios.<br />In 2010, the Access for All campaign started a dialogue across the region about the practicality of cycling and walking safely on public rights of way.<br />Despite a backtracking state energy policy, Northeast Ohio is starting to see some significant renewable energy installations, such as this 1-megawatt solar array of the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority.
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The big issues: Northeast Ohio's sustainability challenges for 2016 and beyond

David Beach  |  01/27/16 @ 10:00am  |  Posted in Transform

If we want to improve our personal and environmental health in 2016 – and make Northeast Ohio a more sustainable place – it’s important to focus on the big, systemic issues that hold our region back. Here are GCBL’s nominations for these key challenges. Let’s all make a New Year’s resolution to address them.

Solar on every roof<br />The transition to clean energy is inevitable. We need to move faster in Ohio. (Photo of solar installation in Cleveland Heights courtesy of AAT Solar)Taking care of existing assets<br />There have been many good recommendations for promoting more sustainable patterns of development in Northeast Ohio, such as the recent scenario-based planning work of the Northeast Ohio Sustainable Communities Consortium. Less cars, more fun<br />It's time to plan and build a multi-modal transportation system that works for all and creates great places.  From fields to lake<br />To protect Lake Erie, we will need a more sustainable agricultural system, not just greater investments in urban sewer infrastructure.

Cleveland awarded $600K to tackle climate vulnerability

Marc Lefkowitz  |  01/14/16 @ 2:00pm  |  Posted in Climate, Transform

“I have to be careful going up hills, because if I stop, the whole thing will tip over,” Nick Rajkovich explains the physics of navigating 40 pounds of air temperature monitors, a camera and a complex steel frame lashed to his black, Surly cargo bike.

<br />Nick Rajkovich on his weather bike in Cuyahoga Valley National Park.<br />Dr. Nicholas Rajkovich, a Brecksville native, built this bike to measure urban heat island effect in Cuyahoga County.<br />Who are the most vulnerable to climate related illness in Cuyahoga County. Dark blue is the most vulnerable based on six social and environmental factors. Data maps from Nicholas Rajkovich.<br />Data maps from Nicholas Rajkovich shows where the highest poverty and paved surfaces from his study of heat island effect in Cuyahoga County. Darker equals a higher concentration of both.

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