Sustainability Plans, Reports & Policies

Sustainability Plans

Washington County's Sustainability Plan outlines the initiatives we plan to achieve through the Sustainability Program and other County departments. The current plan spans five years, from FY 2014 through FY 2018. The plan includes internal and community objectives, activities to be completed, and proposed outcome measures aligned with the goals of the County's sustainability Resolution and Order. 

Washington County Departments have also created their own individual sustainability plans that incorporate initiatives tied to the County's sustainability goals. Each plan was developed using the template and addendum below. In addition, many departments created individualized plans for reducing idling in County vehicles; an example is shown below. Count departments report annually on the progress made in implementing their plans. Summaries of recent reports are linked below.

Washington County and OSU Extension Service collaboratively developed a Food System Plan for the county in 2013. Strengthening the county’s food system can improve citizen health and well-being, create local jobs and economic growth, promote social equity and support vibrant agriculture and farms. The plan identifies opportunities to increase coordination and build on existing efforts.

Sustainability Progress Report

The Washington County Board of Commissioners heard a presentation about the County's sustainability progress during their February 24, 2015 work session. Washington County is taking disciplined, thoughtful steps that are in the best interest of the organization and community, now and in the future. Whenever possible economic savings and improved social equity attributed to sustainability actions are noted, in addition to the more traditional environmental improvements. 

Highlights from the annual progress report (covering FY 2008 - FY 2014) include:

  • The program's holistic approach includes planning and policy development, technical assistance, education and awareness focused on behavior change and annual evaluation of progress
  • A new five-year plan was developed which reflects the County's long-term commitment to sustainability
  • Successes include a 16% decrease in energy use, a 42% increase in recycling and a 6% decrease in fleet fuel use
  • Sustainability efforts are paying off, including $320,000 saved from reducing energy use

The Sustainability Program develops summary reports expanding on the information provided in the annual progress presentations to the Board. The reports include additional detail and information on the program achievements. 

Greenhouse Gas Inventory

Washington County completed its first inventory of greenhouse gas emissions associated with operations. Using 2008 data, this inventory serves as a baseline against which future inventories may be compared. Information from this report will be used to guide practices throughout the organization with the intention to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and identify opportunities for operational cost savings. 

Ultimately, this inventory will help Washington County lower its carbon footprint as sustainable improvements are made.

Sustainability Policies & Guidelines

Washington County has adopted policies that reflect a commitment to sustainable operations and practices.