Sustainability Efforts

View of Summary of Apple Valley's Sustainability Achievements on GreenStep Cities Website

2018 - 2019 Facility Improvement Projects

The City recently completed a series of energy efficiency and sustainability projects to many City facilities.  The $1.9 million project included LED lighting upgrades at many City buildings, conversion of Cedar Avenue street lights to LED technology, boiler replacements at several City buildings, a roof-top HVAC unit upgrade, HVAC control upgrades to major City buildings, insulation of mechanical systems, and water conservation improvements.

This was the second phase of facility energy efficiency improvement programs over the last six years.  The total investment of $2.8 million generates an annual energy and O & M savings of over $133,000 per year.  This represents an approximate 12 percent reduction in the City's annual utility costs.  The EPA Greenhouse Gas savings from these projects equates to 630 metric tons of CO2 annually or the equivalent of 91 cars not operating on the roadway.

City Facilities
The City of Apple Valley has invested in our community's sustainability by building green buildings and renewing existing facilities with energy efficiency improvements such as energy efficient lighting, lighting motion controls, and programmable mechanical controls.  A sampling of the city's efforts in this area include the following:

Municipal Center:  An early green civic building featuring extensive use of daylight to minimize artificial lighting, energy control systems, and an innovative storm water management system.

Apple Valley Senior Center:  Certified as Two-Globes under the Green Globe rating system, this facility makes use of daylight harvesting and in-floor radiant heating and features a green roof.

Apple Valley Liquor Store #3:  Also certified as Two-Globes, this building utilizes a geothermal heating/ cooling system to minimize energy usage for the store and its coolers.

Valleywood Clubhouse
:  Certified as Three-Globes, this building also features extensive use of daylighting to minimize artificial lighting among many other energy efficient elements.

The City has used ARRA funding and energy performance contracts to install energy efficient lighting and automated building lighting and HVAC controls in the remainder of its facilities.  The City also worked in partnership with Dakota Electric to establish an LED street light test zone so that new street light fixtures can be tested before implementation.

The City encourages homeowners to invest in their properties through energy efficiency upgrades.  The City teamed up with Dakota ElectricCenterPoint Energy, and the Center for Energy and Environment through grants from the Joyce Foundation and the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund to encourage homeowner participation in the Better Energy program.  The two-year program yielded 780 home participants and installation of 16,680 CFL light bulbs, 759 low-flow shower heads, and 1,491 low-flow aerators.  149 homeowners completed major upgrades like attic insulation or furnace, boiler, or hot water heater replacement.

The City is home to the Metro Transit Red Line which provides easy access to major metro area destinations through the growing transitway system of the Twin Cities.  The City is also served by the Minnesota Valley Transit Authority (MVTA) which provides over 2.8 million rides per year to residents in the south metro area.  Our growing transit ridership helps to alleviate roadway congestion and vehicle emissions.  The City is also home to over 65 miles of bicycle and walking trails providing an alternative to automobile use.

Apple Valley offers a number of volunteer opportunities for residents who would like to contribute to improving the quality of Apple Valley's natural resources.  The City arranges for volunteers to collect water quality samples from five local lakes through the Metropolitan Council’s Citizen Assisted Monitoring Program (CAMP).  Volunteers also help evaluate the health of Apple Valley wetlands through the Wetland Health Evaluation Program (WHEP). The City has also partnered with Great River Greening to restore habitat health in Alimagnet Park through the removal of invasive buckthorn.

The City is also a partner with Independent School District 196 and the State of Minnesota in the creation of the School of Environmental Studies (SES).  Created in 1994, SES is an award winning high school (grades 11 and 12) co-located with the Minnesota Zoo.  Students are immersed in the study of environmental topics and often work alongside professionals in the field providing benefit of our local environment.

Know Your Impact

You can calculate your carbon footprint using the Carbon Calculator feature of this site.