Sustainable Policies and Practices Earns North Fayette Township Silver
Sustainable Pittsburgh and the Pennsylvania Municipal League are pleased to announce North Fayette Township has earned Silver in the Sustainable Pennsylvania Community Certification! The Township applies sustainable policies and practices in numerous ways, including its efficient recycling services, the utilization of Agricultural Security Areas (ASA), good community planning, and its stormwater Best Management Practices (BMP). North Fayette has cut the consumption and cost involved with its municipal waste collection by incorporating more for sustainable practices. The Township’s comprehensive plan encourages green infrastructure and BMPs, conserving water and preserving land.
Johnna Zona, North Fayette’s Environmental Compliance and Sustainability Expert, explains, “[The]Township takes a lot of pride in the waste removal service that it provides to residents. The recycling program collected 756 tons the year it was introduced in 2013. Last year, sanitation crews collected over 1,541 tons of recycling, more than doubling the amount that was collected just a few years prior. In 2010, there were nine employees working in the sanitation department, and the Township was losing money. Currently, there are five employees in the department and they are collecting from more houses than they were five years ago. Due to increased efficiencies, the waste removal service is now completely self-sustaining. The Township has combined the waste and sewage billing into one mailing, which has not only cut their paper waste in half, but also saved over $13,000 annually in printing and postage costs. Furthermore, the Township now manages payroll in-house, saving an additional $13,000 per year.”
Comprehensive planning and well-regulated land use are integral to sustainability in North Fayette Township. In 2014, a comprehensive plan was created and included the use of ASAs to promote more permanent and viable agricultural operations by strengthening the farming community’s land use security and the right to farm. There are currently 24 parcels totaling over 1,330 acres in North Fayette’s ASA program and it continues to grow.
Integrated stormwater management is another element of sustainability that North Fayette is incorporating. The Township’s Donaldson Park features multiple rain gardens and bioretention areas in its parking lots and along its mile-long walking trail, which itself was built using porous pavement. To engage the school students in this project, the Township had the fifth-grade students from Donaldson Elementary design informational signs that illustrate what stormwater BMPs were used. Working hard to make North Fayette a wonderful place to live, work and play, the Township continues to further sustainability.