“Learn more about our office’s past work. This includes projects that help our local governments conserve energy, reduce waste, and save money, as well as larger planning efforts that support sustainability and resilience community-wide.”
LED Lighting Upgrades at Lichterman Nature Center
In 2017, the City of Memphis - with support from the Office of Sustainability and Resilience - was awarded a $16,000 grant for an LED lighting retrofit at Lichterman Nature Center. $19,000 in matching City funds were also used. Completed in 2019, the new LED lights are projected to reduce energy use at the facility by 68,959 kWh annually which translates to the elimination of 48.5 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions. Corresponding to the reduction in energy use, the City will also see a reduction in energy costs at the facility.
Corrections Center Food Waste Dehydrators
In 2017, the Shelby County Division of Corrections - with support from the Office of Sustainability - was awarded a $73,000 grant to purchase two food waste dehydrators that reduce the amount of organic food waste sent to landfills which helps save on hauling and landfill costs. The resulting nitrogen-rich material from the dehydrated organic food waste can also be used for gardening/landscaping and animal feedstock.
Corrections Center Energy Upgrades
In 2014, the Shelby County Division of Corrections - with support from the Office of Sustainability and Resilience - was awarded a $250,000 grant to implement energy upgrades at the County Corrections Center. Upgrades included a solar thermal water heating system and an ozone laundry system to conserve energy and water use. Inmates were also trained to install the systems as part of a broader strategy for reentry skills training. In addition to this grant, smaller grants and county funding have been used to complete an LED lighting retrofit at the Corrections facility.
HUD Sustainable Communities
In November 2011, Shelby County Government was awarded $2.6M to develop the Mid-South Regional Greenprint and Sustainability Plan. See more here: https://midsouthgreenprint.org/greenprint-20152040/vision-for-2014/
Green Stormwater Infrastructure Projects
The Office of Sustainability and Resilience has implemented several projects and educational initiatives focused on more sustainable stormwater management based on Low Impact Development (LID) practices. Using grant funds, the ORS worked with the TN Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects to install 4 demonstration rain gardens at Shelby County’s Peggy Edmiston Administration Building in 2015. Educational workshops on LID were also offered to homeowners. ORS also received grant funding in 2012 to design and install rain gardens at three Memphis-area public schools, as well as to develop associated educational materials. In 2013, ORS received a grant to host an LID conference and design competition where local landscape architecture and engineering firms were able to submit designs using green stormwater management techniques for an affordable housing site in Memphis.
Local Sustainability Matching Fund
The Office of Sustainability and three partnering local foundations (Assisi Foundation, Community Foundation of Greater Memphis, and Hyde Family Foundations) received a matching grant of $75,000 from the Funders Network. This project helped develop http://www.wherewelivemidsouth.org/, serving as an interactive dashboard for residents to explore local data.