City of Grand Rapids
United States

Population: 193792
Area of jurisdiction: 117.25 km2

Commitments

  Community Government
Absolute base year GHG reduction target: n/a 10% by 2013 (2009)
Baseline scenario (BAU) GHG reduction target: n/a n/a
Fixed-level GHG reduction target: n/a n/a
Carbon intensity reduction target: n/a n/a
Renewable energy target: n/a 100% by 2020
Energy efficiency target: n/a 10% by 2015 (2011)
Government and Community: CO2(e) targets

Performance

Community GHG Emissions
Total ( n/a ):  0 tCO2e
Government GHG Emissions
2009

Mitigation actions

City Bikeway Network
Work on the Bikeway Expansion Program resulted in 23 miles of new bikeways being added to the network during Fiscal Year 2013. At the end of Fiscal Year 2013 there were a total of 30.5 miles of on - street bike facilities. City Commission approved the Bikeway Network Master Map on May 28, 2013. The map was a product of a 4 - month planning effort by Planning Department and Traffic Safety Department staff to develop a comprehensive bicycle facili- ties network as part of the multimodal transportation system in Grand Rapids and Grand Rapids Metropolitan area. Staff took a leadership role in establishing connections between neighboring jurisdictions and in developing standards for bicycle facilities. Start year 2011
Sector Transport
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status Completed
File download
Sustainability Plan Progress report
Progress report issued each year to track progress on sustainability and climate goals adopted in 2011. Start year 2011
Sector  
Type Policy/Strategies/Action Plans
Status In progress
File download
Better Buildings Grand Rapids
The BetterBuildings for Michigan initiative provides basic services, incentives and upgrades that improve home energy performance, lower utility bills and make living spaces more comfortable. The initiative provides a Home Energy Assessment by a certified energy contractor as well as the direct installation of energy-saving equipment such as new thermostats, low-flow showerheads and light bulbs. BetterBuildings for Michigan asks home owners to invest a very small, one-time copay to take advantage of the program. In Grand Rapids, the program is administered through a partnership of the West Michigan Environmental Action Council, the City of Grand Rapids and the Michigan Energy Office. The partners aspire to improve energy efficiency and slash utility costs for approximately 2,500 Grand Rapids homes by December 2012. Start year 2010
Sector Buildings
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status In progress
File  
Municipal Single Stream Recycling
Grand Rapids collected a monthly average of 486 tons of recyclables from 2006 through July 2010, according to the data. The city in August 2010, in partnership with Kent County, implemented a single-stream recycling program that allows residents to dump all recyclables into the same cart. Since then, average monthly collections have risen to 754 tons. Start year 2011
Sector Waste
Type Policy/Strategies/Action Plans
Status In progress
File download
Waste to Energy
he Kent County Energy-from-Waste (EfW) Facility, operating as Covanta Kent, Inc., began commercial operation in January 1990. The facility processes 625 tons-per-day of municipal solid waste, generating up to 18 megawatts of electricity and up to 116,000 pounds of steam per hour for export. Under Covanta Energy's operating contract, the company is responsible for maintaining the Energy-from-Waste facility, fossil fuel steam plant and the underground steam network. Waste is delivered to the facility from Grand Rapids and five surrounding cities. Start year 1990
Sector Waste
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status In progress
File  
Charging Stations
Charging stations are now available at the 5 following locations: Within City-owned parking structures 1) Government Center Ramp (300 Monroe Ave NW) - Ottawa Level 2) Ottawa Fulton Ramp (50 Ottawa Ave NW) - Level A 3) Gallery on Fulton Ramp (10 Commerce Ave SW) - Near entrance 4) Weston Commerce Ramp (16 Weston St SW) - Level B On-street parking 1) City Hall (300 Monroe Ave NW) - Ottawa Street parking spaces Parking spaces adjacent to the charging stations will be treated as premium spaces and motorists using the spaces will be charged $.50 per hour in addition to the regular cost of parking to cover the cost of installation and operation of the charging stations. Start year 2010
Sector Transport
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status Completed
File  
City Buildings Energy Efficiency and Conservation Implementations
City Hall Actions: 1. replace 40 year old windows with energy efficient versions 2. light motion sensors 3. energy efficient lighting 4 implementing smart climate control system Fire Department Actions: 1. Replaced 747 inefficient lightbulbs between 3 different stations Waster Water Treatment Plant: 1.Motion Sensors 2. Fluorescent Lamps 3. Heat Recovery Program Encouraging innovative ideas from staff. Start year 2009
Sector Buildings
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status Completed
File download
Solar Panels on City Facilities
The system, located on the Grand Rapids Water System Administration building, 1900 Oak Industrial Drive N.E., became operational on May 21, 2012 The completed system includes a total of 429 panels: 13 strings of 11 panels with 3 arrays each  Each panel is able to provide up to 285 watts creating a maximum output of 122625 watts direct current (DC) power per hour producing 136,089 kWh of power Start year 2011
Sector  
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status Completed
File download
Community Wide Carbon Footprint Strategies
Target 1: Meet the obligations of the US Mayors Climate Protection Agreement for greenhouse gas emissions reductions by June 30, 2013. 1.1: Strive to meet or beat the Kyoto Protocol targets in their own communities, through actions ranging from anti-sprawl land-use policies to urban forest restoration projects to public information campaigns 1.2: Urge their state governments, and the federal government, to enact policies and programs to meet or beat the greenhouse gas emission reduction target suggested for the United States in the Kyoto Protocol -- 7% reduction from 1990 levels by 2012; and 1.3: Urge the U.S. Congress to pass the bipartisan greenhouse gas reduction legislation, which would establish a national emission trading system Target 2: Reduce total direct and indirect CO2 emissions by 10,000 metric tons by June 30, 2013. Target 8: Increase the number of college/university students using the Downtown Area Shuttle (DASH) buses by 10% by June 30, 2015. Target 3: Decrease the total vehicle miles traveled by City employees by at least 10% by June 30, 2015. Target 4: Increase the number of employees using the City/County ride share program by at least 5% by June 30, 2015. Target 5: Increase the mix of alternate fuel vehicles by at least 5% per year to achieve 25% of total inventory by June 30, 2015. Start year 2011
Sector  
Type Policy/Strategies/Action Plans
Status In progress
File download
Reduce energy demand and fossil fuel consumption strategies
Movement toward energy independence is essential for long-term national security, integrity of the environment, and climate protection. Aggressive efforts are needed to substantially reduce overall non-renewable energy usage and rising energy costs. Renewable energy sources (solar electric, wind, geothermal, biomass, and small and low-impact hydro) can be used to produce electricity with fewer environmental impacts. Target 1: Reduce the City’s annual consumption of gasoline and diesel fuel to 450,000 gallons by June 30, 2013. Target 2: Reduce the City’s annual electrical usage to 103,000 MWh by June 30, 2013. Target 3: Reduce the City’s annual consumption of natural gas to 128,000 Mcf by June 30, 2013. Target 4: Achieve at least 30% of energy use from renewable sources such as hydro, wind, solar, and geothermal by June 30, 2013. Target 5: Increase energy efficiency and conservation of City facilities by at least 10% by June 30, 2015. Start year 2011
Sector  
Type Technical/Infrastructure investment
Status In progress
File download

Adaptation actions

Low Impact Development
Natural Systems focuses on the protection of environmental resources, including the urban forest canopy and water quality, with an emphasis on larger-scale stormwater management strategies.Green Grand Rapids provides an Ecological Framework for prioritizing efforts to protect valued natural resource areas and proposes guidelines for restoring river banks and riparian corridors. An urban tree canopy analysis is provided (to support the concurrent work of the City-appointed Urban Forest Committee) and priorities for ordinance and policy re-evaluation are suggested to help guide tree planting and protection efforts. Greening focuses on improving the visual appeal of city streets and better managing stormwater on streets, in parks and on private development parcels. Green Grand Rapids identifies priorities for greening the street network, illustrates alternatives for adding permeable, landscaped areas along street rights-of-way and suggests other “green streets” strategies. The use of LID strategies in all public and private development is also explored. A series of four park concept plans illustrate a range of greening strategies from native landscapes to underground stormwater detention tanks that settle out pollutants before release to the storm sewer. Connections focuses on on-street pedestrian and bicycle improvements, off-street trails and transit. Green Grand Rapids explores how alternatives to travel by car can be improved by adopting a “Complete Streets” approach that re-balances the use of street rights-of-way to provide sidewalks, on-street bicycle facilities and expanded areas for street trees and landscaping. Off-street trails, especially those along the Grand River (linking to the regional trail system), are also addressed. A special study provides preliminary engineering recommendations and costs for the extension of the existing riverwalk from Fulton Street to the Wealthy Street Bridge.The Grand River focuses on riverfront mixed use and open space development, the expansion of river-related recreation opportunities and improving the ecological health of the river system. Green Grand Rapids provides a concept study evaluating the future mixed-use redevelopment of the City-owned 201 Market Street riverfront site, including recommendations for key public access and open space links. Preliminary guidelines for the improvement and extension of the riverwalk are suggested, including riverbank restoration. A framework for recreational use zones along the Grand River is suggested and options and costs for the creation of a whitewater course on the river’s Downtown reach are explored. Parks and Recreation focuses on the protection and improvement of existing parks, meeting park acreage deficits and sustainable funding strategies. Green Grand Rapids builds on the work of the Mayor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Parks and Recreation (2007) to recommend funding and partnership strategies. In addition, a series of park concept plans (for Joe Taylor Park, Pleasant Park, Ball-Perkins Park and park development at the City-owned Butterworth Landfill superfund site) move the City a major step closer to submitting grant applications for park improvements. Green Grand Rapids also provides an analysis of park accessibility as a planning tool in determining which areas of the city have insufficient park land and where acquisition of park-school sites (which may be declared surplus by the Grand Rapids Public School District) or other parcels can help accomplish the more equitable distribution of park land. Start year 2011
Sector Terrestrial Ecosystems
Type Assessment/Research
Status In progress
File download
Partner with University fo Transformation Planning
A partnership between the City of Grand Rapids and Grand Valley State University to provide an opportunity for City Departments to request and obtain valuable research and analysis regarding vital policy decisions surround economic, social, and environmental issues. It provides an opportunity for student to experience real work environment. Start year 2010
Sector  
Type Education/Awareness Raising
Status In progress
File  
Grand River Cleanup
The Mayors’ Grand River Clean Up began nine years ago as a collaboration between WMEAC and the City of Grand Rapids. Refuse collected from the river and its banks during revious clean ups include plastic and glass bottles, plastic bags, tires, television sets, discarded clothing, shoes, roofing shingles, a discarded bed with mattress, fishing and camping equipment and many other assorted items. Start year 2004
Sector Water Resources
Type Policy/Strategies/Action Plans
Status Completed
File  
Climate Change Emergency Preparedness
Among the largest concerns within the emergency management community is ensuring that the public is aware of the potential threats including poor air quality, extreme heat, flash flooding, and increased exposure to viruses and diseases. This includes education and communication systems that will warn citizens to the imminent threat and what options are available to avoid danger such as cooling centers or evacuation routes. Further, planning in each of those areas must consider specific actions for vulnerable populations within the community. Using GIS tools and sensory data can show where the largest concentrations of vulnerable populations are, and which portions of the community will be impacted most by heat, flooding, pollution, etc. Whether there are resources for creating new data or planners must rely on previously generated data, there is a need to combine them with a perspective on climate change. Existing community vulnerability assessments regarding known emergency events should be revised to include the prospective changes that will occur due to climate change. Start year 2012
Sector Human health
Type Policy/Strategies/Action Plans
Status In progress
File download
Transportation Infrastructure Strategies
Target 1: Reduce parking exit time by 10% by June 30, 2012. Target 2: Increase miles of on-street bike lanes to 100 miles by June 30, 2014. Target 3: Develop 4 miles of new sidewalks by June 30, 2012. Target 4: Increase the number of Type 1 Connector Trails to 12 miles by June 30, 2013. Target 5: Add ¼ mile of new sidewalks on major or regional streets annually. Target 6: Increase the number of college/university students using the Downtown Area Shuttle (DASH) buses by 10% by June 30, 2015. Target 7: Decrease the total vehicle miles traveled by City employees by at least 10% by June 30, 2015. Target 8: Increase the number of employees using the City/County ride share program by at least 5% by June 30, 2015. Start year 2011
Sector Infrastructure
Type Fiscal/Financial mechanism
Status In progress
File download
Increase Tree Planting
1. Adopt a goal of 40% urban forest canopy 2. Develop a database of information about the City’s urban forest in order to develop prioritized maintenance and planting plans 3. Enact public policy changes to maximize tree preservation and planting incentives 4. Increase public awareness and involvement as the foundation for developing broad public support for urban forest issues 5. Update the tree ordinance, planning and zoning policies, and other tree-related City policies, based on a review of the existing ordinance and policies and promising practices from other communities Start year 2011
Sector Terrestrial Ecosystems
Type Policy/Strategies/Action Plans
Status In progress
File download