WESTERVILLE — Genoa is the only township in Delaware County to be designated silver status by the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission.
MORPC made the announcement on Facebook on Nov. 29.
“Sustainable2050 Member Spotlight: Genoa Township has earned silver status for their sustainability efforts,” the post said. “Projects include planting hundreds of trees, cleaning litter, mulching, beautifying, building birdhouses, opening the new Gateway Park, prioritizing cyclists in park development, and making it easier for community members to purchase blue recycling carts!”
Columbus-based MORPC said Sustainable2050 is a program that supports its member communities’ sustainability efforts. It is tied to a Regional Sustainability Agenda, which has four goals and is data-driven.
Goal one is to “improve air quality and reduce climate change impacts to protect public health and the environment.” This has six objectives: reduce per capita vehicle miles traveled; increase alternative fuel vehicles and infrastructure; reduce per capita energy consumption across all sectors; increase local renewable energy-generating capacity; reduce regional greenhouse gas emissions; and increase the number of days with good air quality.
Goal two is to “protect and preserve natural resources to support a healthy and resilient region.” That entails five objectives: reduce the amount of municipal solid waste per capita disposed in the landfill; reduce per capita water consumption; improve water quality in Central Ohio watersheds; increase the amount of land devoted to natural areas and ecosystem services; and reduce the conversion rate of farmland.
Goal three is to “improve the quality of life for all residents by creating sustainable and equitable communities.” This also has five objectives: improve transportation and mobility safety for all residents; prioritize infrastructure development that supports multi-modal transportation options for all users; increase access to parks and regional trails; reduce household energy cost burden; reduce the rate of elevated blood lead levels among children.
Goal four is to “promote robust, inclusive and sustainable growth and development. This had four objectives: Increase the number of businesses with established sustainability policies and practices; maximize infill and redevelopment along existing infrastructure; increase availability of affordable housing options near transit or job centers; and increase employment in green jobs.
There are four levels of Sustainable2050 communities: platinum, gold, silver and bronze. The cities of Columbus, Delaware, Dublin and Westerville are all platinum members. In addition, Powell and Shawnee Hills are Sustainable2050 members.
“MORPC is Central Ohio’s regional council of more than 80 members comprised of counties, cities, villages, townships, and regional organizations,” said the commission website. “We take pride in bringing communities of all sizes and interests together to collaborate on best practices and plan for the future of our growing region. We do this through a variety of programs, services, projects, and initiatives that help improve the quality of life for everyone in the Central Ohio region.”
Delaware is one of 15 counties in MORPC. Of those 15, only the entireties of Delaware and Franklin counties are listed as MORPC Metropolitan Planning Organizations.
For more information, visit www.morpc.org.
Assistant Editor Gary Budzak covers the eastern half of Delaware County and surrounding areas. He may be reached at the above email address.