Dallas remains a leader in environmental stewardship, working to improve the environment by focusing on resource conservation, policy compliance and continuous improvement. Alongside conscientious residents, the City continues to work towards providing a clean and healthy environment for all.
Dallas became the first city in the nation to successfully implement a City-wide EMS across all major departments. Using the ISO standard gives the City a consistent, internationally recognized framework for managing environmental issues and improving operations.
By adopting the ISO 14001:2004 standard, the City:
- Commits to the highest international standard for environmental management.
- Assures continuous improvement through regular audits by third-party auditors.
- Mitigates the environmental impacts associated with City operations.
- Reduces the number of environmental infractions.
The City’s EMS was recertified to the ISO standard for a third time in 2014 and continues to grow.
The City has 28 LEED certified facilities: two LEED Platinum, 10 LEED Gold, 15 LEED Silver (including two LEED for Existing Buildings), and one LEED Certified level facility. Through water efficient landscaping, solar panels and LED lighting, all newly constructed and remodeled city facilities are being built to LEED standards.
Getting around Dallas continues to be an important focus. Electric vehicles can be charged at City Hall, Fair Park, Love Field and many more places, all listed on GreenDallas.net under Transportation.
In 2014, the City of Dallas has committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for City operations by 39% over 1990 levels by September 2017.
In June 2014, the U.S. Conference of Mayor’s (USCM) held their 82nd Annual Meeting in Dallas. During the three-day conference, mayors from across the United States passed 23 resolutions on energy and the environment. In one resolution supporting a federal renewable energy portfolio standard, the USCM endorsed a national goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent from 1990 levels by 2050.
In FY2013-14, Equipment and Building Services identified 22 vehicles to be replaced with alternative fuel vehicles and established a Fleet Emission Tool to calculate emission reductions for the coming year.
The City Marshals Office also works to curb pollution by enforcing state air quality laws. Violations include outdoor burning of insulation material in illegal metal scrapping operations, burning of trash and idling large trucks.
The City’s Air Pollution Control group completed 712 compliance inspections, permit reviews and other related activities in FY2013-14
As a result, 4,749 pounds of CO2 have been eliminated and 21 barrels of oil saved.
The City‘s wastewater treatment plants continue to meet TCEQ mandated permits by removing 99.9 percent of all regulated pollutants.
DWU customers are also eligible for free automatic sprinkler system check-ups through the Free Irrigation System Inspections program. Licensed irrigation system inspectors serve residential and commercial customers and work with other city departments on proper maintenance and operation of city irrigation systems. Through September 2014, inspectors performed more than 2,800 residential and commercial audits for a projected water savings of 637 million gallons.
In FY 2013-14, the City of Dallas Water Utilities used approximately 135 billion gallons of water at a cost of approximately $105.7 million. DWU‘s efforts to conserve water have resulted in an 18 percent decrease in annual usage since adoption of stricter conservation measures in FY 2000-01. From FY 2001-02 through FY 2012-13, ongoing water conservation efforts and implementation of the Strategic Plan have helped Dallas save more than 212 billion gallons of water.
Since 2011, in partnership with grocery stores, colleges and recreation centers, DWU has provided 28 collection locations for citizens to drop off used cooking oil. Throughout the year, staff collected more than 4,900 gallons of used cooking oil. The program participated in 10 National Night Out events and 330 other public outreach events.
Cease the Grease received the North Texas Corporate Recycling Award for Excellence in Public Education and Outreach Program. The program also received the Watermark Award for Communications Excellence from the Water Environment Association of Texas and the Texas Section of the American Water Works Association.
Dallas is also the largest municipality in the Dallas County Household Hazardous Waste program. Residents may drop off home chemicals, including latex and oil-based paints, pool and lawn chemicals, motor oil, antifreeze, small electronics, kitchen/bathroom cleaners, craft supplies, fluorescent light tubes, and aerosol spray cans, free of charge. Last year, Dallas diverted more than 460 tons of Household Hazardous Waste.
A new service was also introduced this year across southern Dallas called the BOPA Mobile. The BOPA Mobile offers a closer opportunity for residents to dispose of household batteries, used motor oil/oil filters, latex paint and used antifreeze. In FY2013-14, Dallas residents disposed of approximately 10 tons of BOPA material at mobile events.
Outreach to the community and to Dallas retailers and restaurants has been underway since the ordinance was passed to help educate everyone who may be impacted by the changes before the January 1, 2015 effective date.