Pacific Swell | Southern California environment news and trends

Santa Monica wins sustainable community award

Pacific Coast Highway in Santa Monica
Pacific Coast Highway in Santa Monica
Eric Demarcq/Flickr (Creative Commons-licensed)

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."

“Santa Monica is a leader in sustainable strategic planning and has taken a well-rounded, data-driven approach to ensuring that the community’s sustainability goals are met,” said the city’s Mayor Richard Bloom in a statement. “We’re honored to have our efforts recognized with the Siemens Sustainable Community Award.”

Santa Monica was chosen “for setting strategic citywide goals that are reinforced across multiple planning areas, such as resource conservation, economic growth, open space and land use, housing, transportation, civic participation, and human services,” according to the U.S. Chamber BCLC press release.

The awards were established in 2008 to showcase and support communities making diligent strides in environmental leadership. As part of this year’s award, all three winning cities will receive $20,000 in trees from the Alliance for Community Trees.