Sustainable Parks Releases First Comprehensive Employee Resource Guide
On January 6, 2012, Sustainable Parks released Leaf No Trace: How to save time, money, and energy at Parks, the first employee resource guide to assist staff with saving energy, water, and other resources.
The guide suggests ways Parkies can further align their individual actions with agency-wide initiatives. Recommended actions span from the commonplace (print double-sided), to the creative (start a bike-sharing program with colleagues).
“We are thrilled to publish the Agency’s first Sustainability Resource Guide,” said Assistant Commissioner for Communications and Strategic Initiatives Susan Donoghue. “As leaders in the environmental sustainability field, Parks must constantly raise the bar on sustainable practices. I encourage all employees to browse through the new Resource Guide for simple tips on how to think and go green in the workplace, and to share the Guide with friends and colleagues.”
The guide is divided into six chapters that ask: How can I reuse materials?, How do I recycle?, How can I save water?, How can I save energy?, How can I improve my health?, and How can I save gas? Each chapter explains Parks’ guidelines, lists examples of agency-wide initiatives underway, and includes a “What you can do” section providing examples of environmentally-friendly actions that employees can take at work. So if you’re curious to know “How can I save gas?,” the guide suggests checking vehicle tire pressure on a regular basis, among other actions.
Leaf no Trace also spotlights some of the extraordinary green leadership prevalent at Parks. It provides a directory for Parks’ 27-member Green Guru network—staff who voluntarily serve as on-site resources for going green—and highlights individual actions Parkies are already taking to be the greenest. For example, staff at the Olmsted Center started a book exchange program, while a Director for Central Forestry & Horticulture installed programmable thermostats to better manage energy consumption.
David Barker, Director of Sustainability Initiatives says, “While these ideas are not all novel, all sustainable actions can stand to be reinforced in the workplace. Plus, we created this guide for a broad audience--not only for the sustainability-minded, but also for those who want to be greener.”
Leaf no Trace was largely written and designed by a team of summer and fall Sustainability Initiatives Interns in 2011. Although this is Sustainable Parks’ first resource guide, it will not be its last. The guide will be updated regularly on the Agency’s intranet.
The guide is another example of how Parks is fulfilling the goals of its Sustainable Parks Plan, released in July 2011. The Education and Outreach chapter of the Plan lays out goals and milestones for increasing staff awareness and training around natural resource management, and the strategic reduction of fuel, energy, and materials consumption. The resource guide is a new tool to help achieve the education and outreach goals.
To contribute your own thoughts on how The Parks Department can further reduce its environmental impact, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written by Anna Hurley, Sustainability Initiatives Intern
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable,
but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”
George Bernard Shaw
(1856 - 1950)