Howard County government is taking a hard look at its own operations and finding ways to conserve and innovate. Howard County has had success phasing in hybrid vehicles and diesel-electric hybrid buses. These vehicles are saving money in fuel and maintenance costs. Howard County also converted all traffic lights on County roads to LED lights. These lights use 60% less energy than before. Other examples of operational changes within the County include the revamping of the recycling program which increased recycling collected and decreased trash collected. Another County facility project is the installation of solar panels at Howard County Library’s East Columbia Branch.
Howard County is also implementing policies that promote sustainable practices such as green building, green neighborhoods, and conservation easements. These policies provide guidance and incentives for businesses and residents to decrease impacts on the environment.
Another thing Howard County is doing is collecting and sharing information with the public. The annual GreenFest is a free family event that provides access to green vendors, organizations and experts. County websites, such as Green Central Station, and publications help customers find green businesses, companies and organizations and learn about new technologies. Residents and educators are now able to discover all kinds of environmental information, as well as opportunities to get involved in making Howard County the best it can be.