Environmental Sustainability in Northbrook
Northbrook's Climate Action Plan
Northbrook's Climate Action Plan (CAP) is Northbrook's mission to reduce carbon emissions and foster a sustainable community for all. This is a Village-wide goal of 35% decrease in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and 80% by 2040, in alignment with the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and LEED for Cities. The Village Board adopted the Climate Action Plan and established a Sustainability Commission on August 10, 2021. Learn more.
Timely Tips for Going Green: Winter 2022
Use the arrows to scroll through most recent social media posts pertaining to sustainability in Northbrook.
´The state recently reopened its solar funding program, in which the state provides a monetary incentive for renewable energy credits generated over a solar installation’s first 15 or 20 years of operation. Many different project types are eligible, however interested parties can only apply for funding through approved vendors. Learn more at https://www.northbrook.il.us/1032/Solar-Initatives
Although cozying up in a blanket or snuggling with the family pet are some of the ways to stay warm, another way is with Nicor Gas free weatherization kits! Nicor customers can order up to two free kits today to seal any air leaks that could be creating a chill and costing you on your heating bill. https://bit.ly/2P9Wbf1
Northbrook is grateful to partner with ComEd for participation in their Energy Efficiency Program! The Village received incentives incentives to complete LED fixture and light conversions at four Village facilities. This will reduce the Village’s kilowatt hour usage by an estimated 548,863 kilowatt hours per year, which is equivalent to 84.6 passenger vehicles being taken off the road!
In addition to energy savings from the increased efficiency, the new LED lights will also be set to dim themselves down automatically based on detection of motion activity or if there is enough natural light coming in through the windows.
ComEd’s Energy Efficiency Program, which is funded in compliance with State law, offers incentives, rebates, discounts and recycling opportunities to assist customers in conserving energy and saving money as a result. See resident or business discounts online: www.comed.com/WaysToSave
During the month of January, recycle your organic holiday tree by placing it at the curb on your recycling day. Remove all lights, garland, and decorations, and make sure your tree is easily accessible at the curb.
Please note that dried-out trees are a fire danger and should not be left in your home or garage or be placed outside against your home.
Looking for a sustainable way to get rid of old or broken toys? Northbrook offers used toy recycling bins in the lobby of Village Hall at 1225 Cedar Lane. Accepted items are anything used for play, including electronic toys. This includes toy pieces, game boards, packaging from board games, books with sound, handheld electronic games and players, remote control vehicles, electronic stuffed animals, building sets, and stuffed animals. Terracycle separates materials for refurbishing and reuse.
UPDATE: Our toy recycling program has reached capacity and is no longer available. Thanks to all who contributed!
The Northbrook Public Library solidified its commitment to sustainability through adopting Northbrook's Climate Action Plan! Located in the lobby across from the elevators, you can drop off the following items to recycle next time you’re visiting:
Empty snack & candy wrappers
Unusable pens, pencils, markers, and glue sticks
Used toothbrushes, empty toothpaste tubes & dental floss containers
Are you twiddling your green thumb looking for an opportunity to get outside as winter sets in? The colder months are a great time of year to tackle invasive buckthorn that is a large threat to our native ecosystem. Get involved with Somme Woods Community restoration workdays, or learn about buckthorn identification and control procedures in your own backyard at http://ow.ly/PvsR30rAtbt
While waiting to pick up food or goods from Northbrook businesses, remember to turn off your vehicle's engine. Idling produces harmful emissions that contribute to smog and climate change. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, idling for more than 10 seconds uses more fuel than stopping and restarting your engine!
Did your cat mistake your holiday lights for a toy again? Don't throw the lights in the trash! Bring any busted, broken, or burnt out holiday lights to the Village for recycling starting tomorrow, December 1, through January 31. Lights can be dropped off in the Village Hall lobby on weekdays from 8:30am-4:30pm, at the Fleet Maintenance Garage behind Village Hall on weekdays from 7am-3pm, or during regular Electronics Recycling events on the first Tuesday and Saturday of the month.
Looking for ways to save water and money? Check your toilets for silent leakage! The Northbrook Water Department recommends the following “color check” method… open the toilet tank, drop a dye tablet or some food coloring in, and wait 15 to 20 minutes. When you return, look in the toilet bowl, not the tank. If you see colored water, then you have a leak.
On Native American Heritage Day, we celebrate the original stewards of lands in Northbrook, the Potawatomi tribe. The Potawatomi teach their children about the "Seven Grandfather Teachings" of wisdom, respect, love, honesty, humility, bravery, and truth toward each other and all creations. Pictured is small white leek, which is used in the traditional cuisine of the Potawatomi and grows in Northbrook’s natural areas.
A great way to connect with nature and help our environment is to shrink your lawn space, plant natives, and leave the leaves to allow wildlife habitat. Stop by the Northbrook Public Library lobby for free milkweed seed packets and information on fall native planting for pollinators! Seed packets are available while supplies last.
The Smash was a hit At last Sunday’s Northbrook Pumpkin Smash at Northbrook Court, we composted a grand total of 4.61 tons of pumpkins! Gourd job, Northbrook
Did you know that red solo cups are type 6 plastic and therefore not recyclable? Waste Management’s single stream recycling service accepts plastic types 1-5. Make sure to check the number on plastics before throwing these items away. Better yet, try to avoid buying disposable plastics and opt for reusable or compostable alternatives instead!
October 6 is Energy Efficiency Day Today we are reminded that being smarter about using electricity and natural gas to reduce wasted energy can deliver significant results. Not only does it help the climate by reducing our electric consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, it also lowers your energy costs each month.
You can read more on how to save at http://energyefficiencyday.org/ways-to-save-on-your-next.../ or receive a free home energy assessment including free ENERGY STAR ® products here: comed.com/WaysToSave/ForYourHome/Pages/SingleFamily.aspx
Scientists report that land use change and global warming are driving a sharp decline in bug populations: this threatens agricultural production and our entire ecosystem. Don’t let your yard be a part of the problem, let it be a part of the solution!
Leaving the leaves on the ground of your yard allows for butterflies, bees, and many other animals to survive winter. It helps maintain nutrient-rich, productive soil for your plants and trees as well. Any leaves on the hardscape can be put in garden beds or composted.
If you must, use a lawn mower to mulch leaves directly into turf grass. The smaller leaf bits will allow sunlight to keep grass growing and provide free fertilizer when microbes and worms get to work recycling them
Greenest Region Compact
When Northbrook signed on to the Greenest Region Compact in September 2018, the Village agreed to achieve green goals in collaboration with other municipalities across the Chicagoland region. Through the Greenest Region Corps, Northbrook receives an Americorps volunteer to serve our community as a Sustainability Fellow. With the GRC agreement, the Village tracks progress in 10 key sustainability areas:
In 2013, the Village and Northbrook Park District partnered to create the Strategic Sustainability Plan, which outlines improvements and initiatives in energy, material management, natural resources, community development and transportation for a more sustainable future.