Sustainability Plans, Reports & Policies

Sustainability Plans

Washington County's Sustainability Plan outlines the initiatives we seek 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. County 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 28, 2017 work session. The County recognizes its responsibility to conserve natural resources, be fiscally responsible and celebrate the achievements of a productive and equitable organization.

Highlights from the current progress report (FY 2016) include:

  • A 28% decrease in building energy use, a 28% increase in recycling and a 16% decrease in fleet fuel use since 2008.
  • Sustainability efforts are paying off, including $795,000 in cost reductions from cutting building energy and vehicle fuel use since 2008.
  • The Sustainability Program is engaging employees to take on new sustainable actions, and encouraging social equity through the support of community organizations.
  • The County worked with the Partners for a Sustainable Washington County Community to launch the Organizational Assessment Tool for Sustainability (OATS).

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 (GHG) emissions associated with operations using 2008 data. This inventory serves as a baseline against which future inventories may be compared. The County's second inventory report includes emissions data from 2008-2014, showing an emissions reduction trend over seven years.

Highlights from the latest report include:

  • Total GHG emissions from County operations showed a 7% drop.
  • Emissions per full-time equivalent employee (FTE) showed a 10% drop.
  • Scope 1 and 2 emissions combined (electricity and fuels) showed a 19% drop.

The County would like to reduce the negative impacts of GHG emissions on human health, economies and the environment for current and future generations. This report will be used to engage County leaders to help manage risk, reduce climate impacts, and inform investment decisions to cut emissions.

Sustainability Policies & Guidelines

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