GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - The City of Grand Rapids has earned a gold certificate for taking on a wide range of environmental sustainability projects in the Michigan Green Communities Challenge. The projects include everything from renewable energy to an urban tree canopy.

The award from Michigan Green Communities Network's (MGC) acknowledges clean energy and environmental leadership through training, education and communications. It is a partnership of the Michigan Municipal League, Michigan Association of Counties and Michigan Townships Association.

Highlights from Grand Rapids' application include:

  • Implementation of a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing program to support community energy efficiency and renewable energy projects
  • Establishment of a community sustainability team to coordinate sustainability initiatives
  • Adoption of a community sustainability plan
  • Adoption of a community forestry plan and urban tree canopy goal
  • Adoption of a policy or ordinance that encourages green infrastructure
  • Adoption of a non-motorized transportation plan
  • Achieving green building certification for a local government building

In addition to honoring Grand Rapids, the Michigan Green Communities Awards recognized 29 other communities Sept. 20 at its annual workshop, which took place in Grand Rapids.

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