Southern California environment news and trends

Santa Monica wins sustainable community award

Eric Demarcq/Flickr (Creative Commons-licensed)

Pacific Coast Highway in Santa Monica

Earlier this month, we reported that California cities Riverside and Santa Monica were both up for one of three 2012 Siemens Sustainable Community Awards. It was announced just last night at a reception in Atlanta that Santa Monica took the midsize community award over Riverside and Jersey City, NJ. Chicago won for large community, while Purcellville, Virginia, took home the prize for small community.

"The awards show just how much the concept of sustainability has evolved for U.S. municipalities," said U.S. Chamber of Commerce Business Civic Leadership Center founder and executive director Stephen Jordan in a press release. "Chicago, Santa Monica, and Purcellville show that getting sustainability right improves quality of life, the efficient use of resources, competitiveness, and attractiveness for residents and visitors."

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Two California cities among finalists for sustainable community awards

Mercer 2213

itsjames460/Flickr CC

A Metrolink passenger train car arrives at the downtown Riverside station.

Santa Monica and Riverside are among the nine finalists vying for the 2012 Siemens Sustainable Community Awards. Chosen by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Business Civic Leadership Center and Siemens Corporation, the finalists were selected from a pool of over 130 applicants, and judged by a panel of sustainability experts.

Both Riverside and Santa Monica are competing in the Midsize Community category against Jersey City, NJ. Boston, Chicago and Las Vegas are the Large Community finalists, with Middleton, WI, Purcellville, VA and River Falls, WI in the Small Community category.

"In Riverside, we see sustainability as more than a program or a destination but as a way of life that is integrated with economic success and inherent in quality of life," said the city’s Mayor Ronald O. Loveridge in a press release. Riverside was chosen for the Green Action Plan, a 38-point strategy for improving sustainability across eight categories. "We are honored to be recognized as a finalist by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Siemens Corporation for our sustainability accomplishments, and we are delighted to share our best practices with other cities through the Sustainable Community Awards program."

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Riverside recognized for sustainability

Daniel Orth/Flickr (Creative Commons-licensed)

File: The 60/91/215 interchage in Riverside, California.

California’s “City of Arts & Innovation” has lived up to its’ motto. Riverside was awarded with “Silver” status as a California Green Community for sustainability efforts, only one of four cities in the state to achieve such status (Claremont, Santa Clarita and Monrovia are the other three).

“The California Green Communities Challenge program has given us a terrific opportunity to share, and learn, 'best practices' with our fellow green cities from all over the state," said Riverside Mayor Ron Loveridge in a press release regarding the recognition.

Riverside earned the status through a host of sustainable initiatives, such as the Whole House Rebate program, which simplifies the process of upgrading the efficiency of new homes. The complete rundown can be seen at www.GreenRiverside.com. Nicely done, Riverside.

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