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Photo of water-wise landscaping at the Juvenile Justice Center.

A green building with water-wise landscaping, the Alameda County Juvenile Justice demonstrates what can be achieved when a County has strong leadership and visionary policies.

Policies

Alameda County's Board of Supervisors provides strong leadership in sustainability by passing countywide policies, ordinances, and resolutions that set specific goals and targets for County agencies and unincorporated communities and require specific steps to meet these goals.

  • 75% Waste Diversion Resolution (Adopted 2008) (PDF - 58kb) *
    Reducing waste going to landfills saves money and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. In 1990, Alameda County voters passed Measure D setting a countywide goal of reducing waste going to landfills 75% by 2010. This policy formalizes the countywide goal; unincorporated communities and County operations must go beyond the current 50% waste reduction mandate and increase waste reduction, reuse, recycling, and composting efforts.
  • Bay-Friendly Landscaping Resolution (Adopted 2008) (PDF - 55kb) *
    Bay-Friendly Landscaping is a whole systems approach to creating and maintaining landscapes that reduces waste, nurtures healthy soils, conserves water, energy and topsoil, minimizes chemical use, reduces stormwater runoff, and creates wildlife habitat. The County's policy requires incorporating Bay-Friendly Landscaping elements in County landscape projects and in public-private projects built on County-owned land.
  • Climate Action Plan for Government Services and Operations Resolution (Adopted 2010) (PDF - 677kb) *
    The Alameda County Climate Action Plan for Government Services and Operations provides a comprehensive blueprint to achieve at least 15% greenhouse gas emissions reductions by 2020 and make County services more efficient. Fulfilling the commitments made in the 2006 and 2007 climate resolutions, this resolution adopts the Plan, 16 Commitments to Climate Protection, and short-term and long-term greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets for government services and operations.
  • Climate Action Principles Resolution (Adopted 2012) (PDF - 176kb) *
    The Alameda County Climate Action Plan for Government Services and Operations contains 80 recommended actions. In 2011-2012, specific programs and principles were developed to facilitate implementation of a subset of these recommended actions which require coordination across County agencies. This resolution lays out key approaches that agencies are instructed to undertake to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in 2013 and beyond.
  • Climate Action Reaffirmation and Support for Paris Agreement Resolution (Adopted 2017) (PDF - 22kb) *
    Alameda County pledges support for the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement in the face of the federal government's decision to withdraw from that historic accord. This includes a commitment to assess and plan for impacts of climate change.
  • Climate Change Leadership Resolution (Adopted 2006) (PDF - 934kb) *
    Climate change threatens the health and economic vitality of our community. This resolution commits the County to create a climate action plan for County government and unincorporated areas.
  • Complete Streets Policy (Adopted 2012) (PDF - 1297kb) *
    Complete streets are roadways designed to accommodate all users, including bicyclists, pedestrians, and transit riders, as well as motorists. This policy lays out principles to be incorporated into planned and existing streets.
  • Cool Counties Declaration (Adopted 2007) (PDF - 292kb) *
    Joining together in a national effort gives counties a powerful voice in urging the federal government to take bold action to stop climate change. Alameda County is encouraging other California counties to join; 48% of the population of California now lives in a Cool County.
  • Electronic Signature Policy (Adopted 2017) (PDF - 83kb) *
    Electronic signatures and workflow reduce paper use while saving staff time. County agencies are encouraged to replace handwritten signatures with electronic signatures whenever allowed by law, such as for contracts and permits.
  • Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station Policy (Adopted 2013) (PDF - 218kb) *
    Plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles can eliminate or significantly reduce local air pollution and global greenhouse gas emissions. In 2013, the County declared that all County-operated charging stations would be initially made available at no charge to the public to accelerate the early growth of EVs in Alameda County.
  • Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Resolution and Policy (Adopted 2011) (PDF - 110kb) *
    County purchases have social, human health, and environmental impacts for the local and global community. This policy builds on previous County policies and initiatives. It provides clear direction for setting product specific environmental standards that will reduce pollution, greenhouse emissions, and solid waste; conserve resources such as energy, fuel, and water; and support a local green economy.
  • Green Building Ordinance for County Facilities (Adopted 2003)  (PDF - 103kb) *
    Buildings consume 30%-40% of the world's energy; construction debris is 21% of material in local landfills. All County municipal projects must be built to a minimum U.S. Green Building Council LEED® Silver standard and divert construction debris from landfill.
  • Green Building Ordinance for Unincorporated Communities (Adopted 2009) (PDF - 181kb) *
    Green buildings provide communities with many benefits. They save water, save energy, provide healthy environments, reduce waste, reduce greenhouse gases, and are economical to own and operate. Recognizing the benefits to our community of green building, the County adopted a Green Building Ordinance for residential and commercial properties in unincorporated communities in 2009.
  • Green Business Recognition Program (Adopted 1996)
    Green business certification encourages local businesses to conserve resources and to promote a greener economy. Currently, over 400 local businesses are County green certified for their environmental performance.
  • Integrated Pest Management Resolution (Adopted 2001) (PDF - 118kb) *
    Prevention-based pest management protects health and water quality. This resolution sets a policy of focusing on long-term prevention of pest problems with minimum negative impact on human health, non-target organisms, and the environment; it requires that County agencies that use pesticides adopt integrated pest management policies and plans.
  • Nutrition and Physical Activity Policy (Adopted 2009) (PDF - 3,003kb) *
    The County seeks to positively impact the health of those working in and visiting County buildings. This policy provides employees with expanded healthy nutrition options as well as opportunities and incentives to stay physically active. It includes requirements to provide healthy food options and reduce waste at County events.
  • Persistent Bioaccumulative Toxins Resolution (Adopted 2002) (PDF - 68kb) *
    Persistent Bioaccumulative Toxins (PBTs) like mercury, lead, and dioxins are linked to health problems such as cancer and developmental disorders, which disproportionately affect low income neighborhoods. This resolution requires elimination or reduction of PBTs through pollution prevention policies and practices.
  • Polystyrene Food Serviceware Ban in Unincorporated Areas - Ordinance (Adopted 2015)
    Polystyrene is a non-biodegradable environmental pollutant made from the possible human carcinogen styrene. Building on existing city bans within Alameda County, this ordinance prohibits food providers in unincorporated areas from serving prepared food in, or otherwise making available to customers, disposable foodservice ware or packaging that contains polystyrene. Instead they are to use biodegradable or recyclable food service ware when using disposables. Food providers are also required to advise their suppliers of prepackaged foods not to use polystyrene packaging.
  • Safe Drug Disposal Ordinance (Adopted 2012) (PDF - 595kb) *
    Prescription drugs that are illicitly or accidently consumed, or that are disposed of improperly, are a potential threat to public health and the environment. This ordinance requires manufacturers of prescription drugs to develop and fund a stewardship program to collect and manage prescription drug waste in Alameda County.
  • Tree Ordinance (Adopted 2002)
    Trees in our unincorporated communities provide shade, beauty, and improved quality of life. The tree ordinance is the County's primary regulatory tool to provide for protection and preservation of all street trees located within the County right-of-way.
  • Vehicle Use Policy (Adopted 2011)
    The County’s fleet provides transportation for employees on official business. The vehicle use chapter of the County’s Administrative Code gives guidance for appropriate use of County-owned vehicles, including anti-idling policy, fleet right-sizing approach, and driving habits to maximize fuel economy.
  • Water Conservation Measures Resolution (Adopted 2015) (PDF - 85kb) *
    Water shortages limit the access of communities and agricultural areas to clean and affordable water. The resolution calls on residents, businesses, and County employees to conserve water and meet state targets to address a severe drought in the State of California.

* Portable Document Format (PDF) file requires the free Adobe Reader.

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