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Urban Environmental Accords: Greening Cities One Star At a Time

Whether it is Portland Portland, town, England
Portland, town (1991 pop. 12,945), Dorset, S England. It is on the Isle of Portland, a small rocky peninsula. Portland stone has been used in St. Paul's Cathedral and other important London buildings. Lobsters and crabs are harvested.
, Burlington Burlington, town, Canada
Burlington, town (1991 pop. 129,575), SE Ont., Canada, on Lake Ontario. First settled (1798) by Mohawk Loyalist Joseph Brandt, Burlington's economy was built on the shipment of wheat, lumber, and quarried rock by waterway.
 or San Francisco San Francisco (săn frănsĭs`kō), city (1990 pop. 723,959), coextensive with San Francisco co., W Calif., on the tip of a peninsula between the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco Bay, which are connected by the strait known as the Golden , some cities just seem to give out that green vibe. So, what exactly makes a city green? Is it the number of farmers markets? Is it the quality of public transportation? Does it have something to do with the number of residents and businesses who recycle re·cy·cle  
tr.v. re·cy·cled, re·cy·cling, re·cy·cles
1. To put or pass through a cycle again, as for further treatment.

2. To start a different cycle in.

? Sometimes it is difficult to tell weather or not a city is truly green, or just gives out that crunchy crunchy - floppy disk , eco-friendly eco-friendly adjecológico

eco-friendly adjnon nuisible à or qui ne nuit pas à l'environnement

eco-friendly adj

Well, thanks to the United Nations, cities worldwide have a guide on how to become more authentically sustainable places. Drafted in 2005 and endorsed by the UN, the Urban Environmental Accords serve as a set of 21 principals by which to make an urban center more eco-friendly. Originally promoted by a group of mayors at the 2005 World Environment Day, the Accords have now been enacted in over 100 cities worldwide.

Acting as a manual for urban sustainability, The Accords outline a 21-point program that guides cities on both small and large things they can do to green their spaces. The 21 points are broken down into seven categories: Water, Transportation, Waste Reduction, Urban Design, Environmental Health, Energy and Urban Nature. An example of an action under the category of "Urban Nature" is "Ensure that there is an accessible public park or recreational open space within half-a-kilometer of every city resident by 2015." Further, cities earn stars for the number of actions, or points, they achieve, and the actual sustainability of a city can be judged based on how many stars they have received.

Unlike most other programs of its type, The Urban Environmental Accords are an effort that spans continents. By identifying urban residents with a movement much larger than most, The Accords foster a broad sense of involvement in and commitment to the worldwide community.
Aside from authentically accepting some responsibility for the environmental conditions of a city, The Urban Environmental Accords can actually help cities make some money. As Mark Weiner Weiner can mean a metaphore for penis, or:
  • Weiner, Arkansas
Weiner is the surname of:
  • Allan Weiner, American radio broadcast campaigner
  • Anthony D.
, a staff writer for The Post-Standard in New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of
 puts it in his article, "City Saves $1M,"

A new effort to turn Syracuse into a green city is starting to pay big dividends, saving the city almost $1 million per year through environmentally friendly Environmentally friendly, also referred to as nature friendly, is a term used to refer to goods and services considered to inflict minimal harm on the environment.[1]  practices, city officials say. Those savings are expected to grow as Syracuse moves forward with a seven-year program spelled out in an international accord Mayor Matt Driscoll signed in November.

More specifically, Syracuse made an immediate move on some of the actions in order to compensate in the budget for the cost of others. Basically, the city temporarily robbed Peter to pay Paul, but there were no economic causalities. Put simply, while the initial investment cost that goes into enacting the Urban Environmental Accords can be considerably high, certain aspects of the program have quick turn-arounds and even quicker pay-offs. As Weiner explains,

At least $537,000 of the project costs have already been returned to the city through a state energy-saving program. Syracuse recently finished installing energy-saving equipment and new insulated in·su·late  
tr.v. in·su·lat·ed, in·su·lat·ing, in·su·lates
1. To cause to be in a detached or isolated position. See Synonyms at isolate.

 windows in City Hall. The city now buys all of the energy for the historic building from alternative sources such as hydro hy·dro  

n. pl. hy·dros
1. Hydroelectric power.

2. A hydroelectric power plant.
 and wind power.

Needless to say, sometime you have to go green to make green.

In the end, The Urban Environmental Accords are a concrete set of guidelines guidelines, a set of standards, criteria, or specifications to be used or followed in the performance of certain tasks.
 that really advocate the eco-principals that can make city truly sustainable. So next time you are wondering, "How sustainable is my city?" check and see how it stacks up with the points of The Accords.

Also, for more information on The Urban Environmental Accords, check out:

San Francisco Mayor Proclaims Urban Environmental Movement (

The Urban Environmental Accords – Environmental Justice for Some (Joel Makower: Two Steps Forward)

The Urban Environmental Accords

Note: The full text of Mark Weiner’s article, "City Saves $1M" is only available through the Post-Standard’s paid archive. Anyone interested in the full-text content can contact me, and I will be happy to dig through my archieves and send out a copy!
Copyright 2007 Green Options
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
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Stephanie (Member): Boring 6/24/2010 4:10 PM
This article is prime example why nobody really pays much attention to the 'green movement'. If you can even qualify it as a movement at the moment. I'd go with fad. I found this article useless and riddled with errors. Make this article more exciting and maybe you'd catch the attention of a teen. This is also a great example of how just about anybody can get something published. Mistakes, banal factoids, and socially snide antics which only a child might be entertained by. Shame on whomever wrote this. Go to an actual library.

 Reader Opinion




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Author:Jessica Jane French
Publication:Green Options
Date:Sep 25, 2007
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