If you've been anywhere near the news this past month,
you've heard that the subprime housing market was not
sustainable and that the lack of long-term consideration of
resources has proven to be disastrous.
Sustainability is about having a long, large outlook -
preserving our communities and resources for the generations
to come and not compromising children's futures.
The significance of this long-range outlook for your
business begins right now. A company's social responsibility
is becoming more important to bright young professionals
seeking a place to work and a community in which to raise
their families. The marks of a sustainable city are
- Access to transportation options
- Availability of housing options with a good mix of
type and price located near services such as grocery
stores, schools and parks.
- Dedication to minimizing waste, reducing energy and
water usage, and improving water and air quality.
- Preservation of green spaces for parks.
Sioux Falls is already making good progress toward a
green future. But we have a long way to go in the categories
of recycling and energy and water conservation, to name a
Koch Hazard Architects and South Dakota State University
recently hosted a conference called Plain Green to talk
about just that. In case you missed the conference, here are
some simple things you can do to live more sustainably:
- Appoint a green team at work. A focused team will
ensure green initiatives are a priority. You can find
presentations for getting started at www.plaingreen.org.
- Start indoors. Employees have chemical sensitivities
to paints, carpets, sealants and other common materials,
which can lead to absenteeism and sick building
syndrome. Finish your building with healthy materials.
Clean and maintain it with green products, and take
steps to maximize natural day lighting and make sure
your building is well-ventilated.
- Think beyond your property line. When planning for a
new home or a large development, consider the impact of
your project on the community.
- Recycle for your own benefit. Here's an economic
incentive: Novak Sanitary Services launched a program
that measures how much residents recycle and rewards
them with points redeemable at merchants. RecycleBank
hopes to expand to commercial customers.
- Get involved in the Sioux Falls Green Project. By
now you've probably heard about this citywide initiative
to encourage residents to lead greener lives. It's a
simple thing that begins with small changes. Visit the
www.siouxfallsgreenproject.com to find a wide range