Category Archives: Interesting Web Links

America Recycles Day

November 15th is America Recycles Day. Sponsored by Keep America Beautiful and major corporate sponsors including PepsiCo, Nestle Waters North America, and Waste Management, the program began in 2011 and aims to increase recycling efforts through awareness and education. Their website includes tips on how to recycle more, ways to find recycling facilities and special events in your area, and opportunities to host your own recycling event. You can also join the over 20,000 people who have already pledged to recycle more.

Several events are planned in our area for next week. Noteworthy events include the following:

  • Cocasset River Recreation Area Cleanup, 68 Mill Street, Foxboro, MA. Tuesday, November 13th from 8:30 am – Noon. Join Waste Management and Patriot Place at the Cocasset River Recreation Area in Foxboro for trail maintenance and clean up activities.
  • WPI 2nd Annual Waste Audit, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 100 Institute Road, Worcester, MA. Thursday, November 15th from 8:00 am – 4:00 pm. WPI’s Student Green Team will sort trash from campus buildings to assess the campus’ waste stream and demonstrate it to faculty and student body.
  • URI – America Recycles Day, University of Rhode Island – Memorial Union, 50 Lower College Road, Kingston, RI. Thursday, November 15th from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm. URI’s student recycling group will host an America Recycles Day booth at the Memorial Union offering free handouts and encouraging students to take the pledge to recycle more.

How’s My Waterway?

Recently the US EPA released a website summarizing the condition of thousands of waterways across the United States. The “How’s My Waterway” site uses GPS technology or a user-entered zip code or city name to provide information about the quality of local water bodies. The site generates a list of waterways within five miles of the search location, and each waterway is identified as unpolluted, polluted or unas­sessed. A map option offers the user a view of the search area with the results color-coded by assessment status. Information on the type of pollution reported for that waterway and what has been done to reduce it is also provided. The site was introduced on October 18, 2012 to mark the 40th anniversary of the passage of the Clean Water Act.

Visit to explore the site for yourself.


The following was exerped from an announcement made on the Greenroads website.  I found it an interesting use of old building/plumbing material in road/sidewalk construction.  Check out the full article and read more about the Greenroads program by following the link above:

The Greenroads Foundation has announced that the the Meador Kansas Ellis Trail Project in Bellingham, Washington has become the first-ever project to achieve Greenroads certification

Some of the sustainable elements incorporated into the project’s design included:

  • Recycled porcelain aggregates made from over 400 crushed toilets that were diverted from the landfill
  • Asphalt with recycled content of 30 percent and recycled concrete aggregates
  • Porous pavements that naturally treat runoff and provide effective stormwater management
  • Low-energy LED street lighting
  • New amenities and improvements for pedestrians and bicycles using the Whatcom Creek Trail.

High Line – NYC

Spring is almost here and with that comes new chances to get out and explore our region. With that in mind, consider taking in the “High Line” on your next visit to New York City. Located on Manhattan’s West Side, the High Line is an ongoing conversion of an abandoned elevated freight line into a public park and greenway. The space provides a peaceful, unique perspective over the frenetic city, including planting areas, promenades, viewpoints, and art displays alongside a wide walking path. Section 1 opened in 2009 and Section 2 opened in 2011, with plans for a third and final section to be completed in the near future. The current park stretches for approximately one mile above the streets of Chelsea and the Meatpacking District, in close proximity to public transportation. For more information, including videos, slideshows, renderings and more, visit the High Line website at

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The High Line is a high-profile example of adaptive reuse, taking old infrastructure and converting it into something completely new and functional instead of tearing it down. A similar project is slated for closer to home. This summer, RIDOT plans on starting construction of the Washington Pedestrian Bridge, converting former lanes of Interstate 195 Eastbound into a public park. This park will include a trail connecting to the East Bay Bike Path, designed by PARE.

– Brandon Blanchard

Wind Energy to Power Wastewater Treatment in Providence

Posted by: Pare’s Senior Environmental Scientist Lauren Hastings

Providence’s first utility-scale turbine was assembled last week in Field’s Point. The new 365-foot turbine is the first of a series of three wind turbines to be installed by the Narragansett Bay Commission (NBC) at the Five Fields Wastewater Treatment Plant.The plant treats wastewater from homes, businesses, schools and industries before it is released into Narragansett Bay.

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photo credit: Brandon Blanchard

Once installation is complete, the 4.5 megawatts of wind energy generated by the turbines is expected to provide approximately 40 percent of the plant’s energy needs, saving them about to $1.1 million per year in energy costs. Included in the projected savings is anticipated revenue  that will result from selling electricity to electric utility National Grid on days when the turbines generate more power than the plant needs.

You can visit the NBC website for more information on the Field’s Point Energy Project. Be sure to check out the panoramic images of their construction progress, which are updated daily.


Massachusetts is one of the top 10 states for LEED green buildings

Check out this link to read the whole article Top 10 states for LEED green buildings – Today’s Top News – Supply House Times.

It’s exciting to hear that Massachusetts is recognizing the need to design with sustainability in mind.  It’s also exciting that Pare is a part of the movement.  We are currently involved in the site designs for several registered LEED green buildings in Massachusetts.  Some that are currently in construction are the Plymouth North High School, the Natick High School and just starting construction is the East Bridgewater Junior/Senior High School.  The LEED projects that haven’t gone out to bid and are still in design include Central Middle School in Quincy, Marshfield High School, Hingham Middle School, Somerset-Berkley High School and Franklin High School.  Each of the schools are in varying stages of design but we are continuously coordinating and reviewing the score sheet to make sure LEED points that we aimed to achieve are still able to be met with our designs.

Posted By:  Cari Orsi

Sidewalks that turn into power?

This is an interesting link that talks about how people walking on sidewalks can produce power.  Take a read through and see what you think.  If it’s something that materializes think about the opportunities to use it at main entrances of schools and campus walkways.

Posted By:  Cari Orsi