New Hampshire

new hamsphire
Background With small country farmhouses and snow-covered woods, New Hampshire evoked the idyllic New England imagery of Robert Frost, a longtime resident. Yet behind this scenic backdrop lay a modern state that was working hard to be a model for energy efficiency and renewables. New Hampshire’s per capita energy consumption was already the fifth lowest in the country, according to the Energy Information Administration, behind tiny Rhode Island and efficiency heavyweights New York, California...
Read More

Kansas

kansas
Background Kansas, a landlocked state known to residents as the Sunflower State, boasted a population of 2.8 million. Kansas is one of the most productive agricultural states in the nation, but its gently rolling mix of farmland, prairie, and forest is also home to well-known and livable cities, including Wichita, Kansas City, Topeka, and Lawrence.   While the state was immortalized by the famous tornado in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz, it was another, real-world twister that str...
Read More

State Code Status: Massachusetts

boston
Background Massachusetts had something for everyone: nation-leading energy efficiency plans; technical support and grants to support the 351 cities and towns committed to moving along the path of energy efficiency and renewable energy toward zero-net energy buildings; robust sustainability goals for state-owned properties, and so much more. Why We Watched Stretch Code In July 2009, Massachusetts became the first state to adopt an above-code appendix to its state code - the 120 AA Str...
Read More

Austin, Texas

Background In 2010, Austin was one of the fastest growing cities in America - and with good reason. The city offered something for everyone: the political fervor of a state capital, the laid-back vibe of a college town, and the rapid pace of a booming business center. Although well-known as a progressive island in a staunchly conservative state, the city and its metro area struck a delicate political balance. Environmental issues often dominated local government, as the city’s success has fed...
Read More

Rifle, Colorado

colarado
Background In 2010, Rifle was a thriving city of 9,000 in Western Colorado’s Garfield County that encapsulated the old and new west. Named for a trapper’s misplaced firearm, the town center is a throwback to the old west, a collection of small brick buildings built by the ranches and mineral wealth of the surrounding arid plateaus and river valleys. To avoid going the way of other boom and bust towns, Rifle made a commitment to developing a sustainable, diverse economy. Mainstays of the city’...
Read More

Idaho

idaho
Background Idaho is a mountainous state known for its natural beauty and outdoor recreational opportunities. It is not surprising, then, that the sustainability movement gained momentum during the noughies, as conservation is a value intrinsic to the state and its citizens. Idahoans are conscious of the environmental impact of their lifestyles and took steps to ensure that the state preserved its natural heritage. When combined with the clear economic benefits of energy efficiency, it is easy...
Read More