In April 2009, the Wake County Board of Commissioners identified three major goals for the year. One of the goals was to update and enhance the County’s Environmental Stewardship Agenda to incorporate strategies for sustainability and “green” initiatives. As part of the goal, the Board specified five elements:
Expanding the use of alternative fuel vehicles
Pursuing LEED certification for large capital projects
Continuing to make energy efficient improvements and upgrades in buildings
Expanding partnerships in reuse and recycling
Establishing a Citizens’ Task Force to evaluate current strategies and recommend changes and new strategies.
Consistent with the Board of Commissioners' goal, the Task Force discussions focused on the following areas:
Water Resources Conservation and Management – including topics such as demand management, reclaimed water, surface water and groundwater management, drought response, etc.
Solid Waste Reduction and Management – including topics such as recycling, waste reduction, waste diversion, etc.
Energy Conservation and Management – including topics such as electricity and natural gas consumption, energy efficient building design, vehicle fuel efficiency, etc.
The objectives of the Sustainability Task Force was to (a) develop recommendations that are environmentally and financially sustainable for each of the three focus areas, and (b) develop performance measures by which the County, and the community as a whole, can measure progress toward the achievement of sustainability targets in the areas of water, waste and energy.
The Sustainability Task Force was facilitated by North Carolina State University staff.