FGBC Green Local Government
Oldsmar goes GOLD!
The Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) create the Green Local Government Standard to designate green cities and counties that exemplified in environmental stewardship. The program was developed in partnership with experts from local governments, private sector green building industries, universities, and state & federal agencies. The standard looks at all aspects of local government operations. Because no two municipalities are the same, the standard allows for flexibility by having over 300 different metrics that can be used towards certification.
The City of Oldsmar received a Silver certification in 2013 with 33% of maximum applicable points awarded. Through the hard work and dedication across all City departments, we were able to increase our score to 54.63% in 2020. The higher score allowed Oldsmar to achieve Gold status! In fact, we currently have the third highest score in Florida!
To learn more about what went into getting this certification, click on the tabs below for highlights.
For the last decade Oldsmar's administration has been committed to making City operations more sustainable and green. To better reflect this commitment, the Mission Statement was updated to:
To provide leadership, innovation, environmental stewardship, and excellent services in partnership with the community
Other actions that have been taken through the years are:
- Monitor and track local government energy and water use and solid waste and recycling rates
- Construct and renovate buildings for LEED certification
- Employ green cleaning and maintenance procedures
- Maintain a staff position to coordinate current and future green activities and education
In addition to building and renovating LEED certified buildings, Oldsmar's Planning and Redevelopment Department has worked to ensure the environmental health across the entire city. A few of the ordinances and actions that have been enacted are:
- Maintain an electronic database of all building energy code compliance
- Require mitigation for consumption of natural habitat and resources
- Enact a tree preservation ordinance
- Enact a septic system replacement ordinance
With all of our outdoor parks and amenities, Oldsmar is a great eco-tourism destination. We pride ourselves in our green spaces and keeping our community beautiful.
- Create an eco-tourism campaign
- Develop an historic preservation ordinance
- Place signs and/or brochures at green features of public amenities
- Install bicycle security at public amenities
Public safety is vitally important to Oldsmar. Oldsmar Fire Rescue and our Pinellas County Sheriff's Office Community Officers do an amazing job ensuring their operations are sustainable while maintaining the highest standards. Check out some of the ways our public safety teams are incorporating green practices.
- Fire department conserves water where appropriate during training operations
- Incentives for disaster mitigation
- Offer mitigation audits to homes, businesses, and local government buildings
- Public safety staff attend Healthy Street design training
Oldsmar has been tracking internal energy consumption for nearly 10 years. Tracking consumption allows us to understand energy trends across all city facilities and create reduction plans where applicable.
- Have renewable energy on government building
- Monitor and track local government energy consumption
- Perform an energy audit of facilities to determine high energy consumers
Environmental stewardship has been important to Oldsmar for decades. It is evidenced in the creation of wildlife preserves and park spaces that are throughout the city. Some other programs the city has enacted through the years are below.
- Create an endangered lands conservation program
- Develop and implement plans for invasive species removal throughout public lands
- Enact open burning regulations
- Operate an environmental education center
- Provide air quality index, water quality testing, and GIS data on website
Oldsmar has four times the national average of park area (40%). We love our parks and we want to make sure they are great places for residents to visit - both human and wildlife.
- Apply Florida Friendly Landscaping principles at public amenities
- Minimize heat effect and stormwater runoff
- Implement recycling stations at all areas
- Implement energy efficient lighting and controls for outdoor courts, parks, and playfields
- Maintain organic community garden
- Employ green landscaping procedures for local government facilities
Oldsmar's Planning Department and City Management have developed various methods to help keep the city thriving. We want to make sure our policies align principles that will make our city more resilient in the future.
- Healthy street design is official local government policy
- Encourage mixed-use zoning and development
- Maintain or reduce net impervious surface area through zoning decisions
- Develop and maintain urban area boundaries
Maintaining the city streets and stormwater systems is quite a task. Not only do these departments help maintain the flow of traffic and decrease flooding within the city, they also ensure that the stormwater that enters the Bay from city outfalls is clean and trash-free.
- Implement advanced stormwater controls and waterfront considerations
- Operate local government alternative fueling station
- Use LED traffic lights
- Provide regular street sweeping
- Create a community stormwater education campaign
Oldsmar operates its own water and wastewater plants to service our residents. Our Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment Plant (ROWTP) was the first LEED certified ROWTP in Florida. Both facilities strive to provide the best services with the least environmental impact as feasible to maintain safe water and wastewater standards.
- Create reclaimed water infrastructure
- Conduct an energy audit of treatment facilities
- Seek Florida Department of Environmental Protection plant excellence award (ROWTP received award in 2018)
- Use online bill pay and/or recycled paper for billing content
Oldsmar was the first municipality in Pinellas to adopt single stream recycling. The city has committed to reducing the amount of waste going to landfill and to ensure harmful chemicals are disposed of correctly.
- Offer curbside recycling for homes and businesses
- Provide recycling education materials to residents and businesses
- Offer mulched yard waste to community
- Participate in county chemical/hazardous waste collection
FGBC allows each municipality to present innovative projects and policies that are not found within the standard metrics for additional points. Innovation credits can be in any 19 categories within the standard. Below are the five innovations we received credit for in 2020.
- Automatic sandbagging machine - this machine has allowed staff to increase the number of sandbags offered to residents
during a storm event while reducing the physical labor required by staff
- County water line reuse - we are required to flush and keep in good condition the water line connecting the city to Pinellas county water for emergency purposes. Our staff found a way to reuse the water from this routine maintenance, saving nearly 50,000 gallons of water per month
- Aquifer storage and recovery (ASR) well for reclaimed water - an estimated 100 million gallon ASR well was constructed at the wastewater plant to store excess reclaimed water during rainy season that can be used during dry season. The ASR well stores water that would otherwise be discharged into the bay and reduces the use of potable water during dry season
- Free Little Library - Oldsmar has several Free Little Libraries around town. Next time you are out at Bicentennial Park, Cypress Forest Recreation Center, or State Street Center pick a new (to you) book or drop off a book you are finished reading
- Handicap accessible playground - This playground in R.E. Olds Park allows children and adults with varying mobility needs to play together and enjoy the outdoors