Sustainability Strategic Plan

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The city of Phoenix is committed to securing environmental and economic livability for future generations in the region, with an emphasis on solar energy production.  Phoenix has long used sustainability as a guiding principle, believing that sustainable living is critical to ensuring that the actions we take today do not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their needs. Phoenix’s sustainability motto, “Living Like it Matters!” reaffirms the sustainability creed that guides its current programs and future plans.


Accelerate renewable energy development.

The city has a long-standing commitment to resource conservation and continues to be an active participant in energy conservation, efficiency and environmental preservation.  Pursuing renewable energy development guides the city towards energy independence.


  • Pursue utility scale solar development through emerging technology on the SR 85 Landfill property.
  • Implement small or distributed scale solar projects on City-owned buildings and property.
  • Proceed with gas-to-energy projects at landfills and treatment plants.
  • Develop effective public-private partnerships to secure timely power purchase and solar service agreements.

Enable opportunities for environmental stewardship.  

Environmental sustainability is best achieved by encouraging shared responsibilities, protecting natural systems, and promoting the efficient use of natural resources.  It is also important to implement policies, programs and practices that have a far-reaching effect on the environment.


  • Actively participate with the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) to attain and exceed federal air quality standards for the region.
  • Create sound water management policy and ensure choices are available to engage residents in conservation efforts including water, solid waste, natural habitat and open space.
  • Seek, evaluate and integrate emerging technologies and products including green building elements, environmental purchasing, energy management, alternative fuels, alternative surfacing materials, and heat island reduction.
  • Develop new methods to further reduce the tonnage of solid waste being hauled to landfills and increase recycling participation and diversion rates by residents.
  • Continue attaining federal funds to pursue sustainability initiatives.
  • Facilitate the development and expansion of local green businesses to achieve a stronger economy and job creation in the city.   

Enhance sustainable land use and mobility practices.

The success in sustainable land use and mobility lies in adopting policies that encourage the use of green infrastructure and buildings, Brownfield redevelopment, creating connectivity within road networks and ensuring connectivity between pedestrian, bike, transit and road facilities.


  • Develop and implement voluntary programs and incentives for the community to participate in residential sustainability initiatives.
  • Implement recommendations from the Tree and Shade Master Plan and develop integrated Pedestrian, Bicycle, and Transit plans.
  • Utilize the Capital Improvement Program to achieve sustainability priorities.
  • Promote mixed land use to achieve complete communities and encourage infill development.

Foster collaboration and communication. 

Empowering employees at all levels through collaborative workgroups will galvanize them to realize the city’s sustainability goals. They in turn become an example of the city’s efforts and progress to the community they serve. Communicating and celebrating the city’s accomplishments is essential to motivating employees, customers, stakeholders and the public in achieving sustainability goals.


  • Strengthen and support the city’s Sustainability Task Force efforts through a renewed organizational commitment and public/private partnership networking.
  • Provide a mechanism to formally coordinate public information and education programs offered by the city and its partners regarding sustainability.
  • Develop media campaigns, utilizing multiple channels to increase internal and external messaging on organization sustainability programs and accomplishments.
  • Engage city of Phoenix employees by fostering a culture of sustainability.