Seattle Parks and Recreation Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent
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Resource Conservation Programs


Special Announcements

See the results of Seattle Parks pilot irrigation reduction program

This short report evaluates the Irrigation Water Reduction Study performed in approximately 150 parks during the summer of 2012.

» Read results You will need adobe acrobat reader to view this document.

The Resource Conservation Programs in Seattle Parks and Recreation are a group of individual programs addressing environmental performance and stewardship issues in landscape, horticulture and urban forestry operations systemwide.

The City of Seattle is committed to environmental stewardship in city operations, and is developing an Environmental Management System for all departments through the Mayor's Office of Sustainability and Environment. These systems provide the framework for environmental policy development and allow departments to evaluate their environmental performance. A special departmental team has developed a departmental Environmental Policy and is currently working on a systematic plan for assessing performance and development of Best Management Practices for all operations.

Best Management Practices (or BMPs) document standards and specifications that reflect the most comprehensive, up-to-date operational practices that reduce environmental impacts. Seattle Parks and Recreation's BMPs for Landscape, Horticulture and Forestry were developed in 2000, and are the standard reference for these operations. They will be used as a model for future BMPs for other department operations like Planning, Construction and Facility Maintenance.

Seattle Parks and Recreation has been actively implementing Water Conservation Programs in building repair, renovation and development, wading pool operations and irrigation practices since 1992. Irrigation system upgrades are now designed to minimize water use through weather-based computer programs. These programs base irrigation needs on site characteristics and current weather conditions, and deliver a precise amount of water needed for that day. To date, 42 park facilities have been programmed to achieve water savings this way.

Integrated Pest Management(IPM) programs are in place for all city departments, and with 11% of the city's total land, Parks has a commitment to reduce environmental impacts of pesticide use. Since 2000, Parks staff have achieved a consistent annual reduction in pesticide use. For more information about the City and Parks's Pesticide Reduction and Integrated Pest Management Programs, see the Office of Sustainability and the Environment and Parks' Frequently Asked Questions.

Updated May 28, 2013
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