Neighbors for Neighbors

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Two JP resident selected to be finalist in "Pitch the City" contest


Alexandra Reilinger and I have been selected as top 10 contestant for our Green idea for the City.

Please vote for us:

Here is copy of the press release the city just put out:

Mayor Menino, City of Boston & Down:2:Earth Announce Semi-Finalists in “Pitch the City” Contest

“Turning Beantown into Greentown!”

Mayor Thomas M. Menino and the City of Boston, in partnership with Down:2:Earth (D2E), Boston’s sustainable living expo, have announced the Semi-Finalists in Pitch the City, an open contest seeking the public’s input on making Boston a greener city.

According to Jim Hunt, Chief of Environmental & Energy Services, “We received more than 100 entries and are enthusiastic about the wealth of creative ideas they contain. The breadth of inventive projects proposed by residents as young as age 11 is impressive. Boston truly is a city of innovative thinkers and Pitch the City is an ideal way for anyone to help us turn Beantown into Greentown!”

After much deliberation, the City has chosen these innovative, and practical, ideas:

Shaina Glidden, Cambridge, MA: Implement "Go Car Free Day" by the end of 2009.
Alexander Lee, Concord, NH: Get more people to hang out (their laundry).
Jess Lerner, Brookline, MA: Boston minds think green - a public action and awareness campaign.
John McCavanagh, Boston, MA: Reduce waste using reusable water bottles instead of single serving bottled water.
Joseph Porcelli, Jamaica Plain, MA: Use a mug. Reduce waste. Get a discount!
Alexandra Reilinger, Jamaica Plain, MA: Reduce, Reuse & Recycle Mural Project.
Eran Segev, Cambridge, MA: Increase awareness of, and incentivize, alternatives to driving through a pedestrian-oriented “citizen’s passport” to make walking, biking, and alternative transportation more fun, educational, rewarding and good for business.
Mary Beth Vogel, (Back Bay), Boston, MA: Reduce air and noise pollution in Boston by using greener (less noisy) gardening methods.
Katherine H. Walsh, West Roxbury, MA: Increase the community involvement, efficiency and success of “Grow Boston Greener,” Boston’s tree planting initiative.

Pitch the City gives residents a chance to share their creative ideas about how the City can become more environmentally conscious in how we live, work, commute, eat or heat. The 10 semi-finalists will be asked to submit more detailed proposals by March 6th and the Pitch the City team will identify the four winning proposals by March 17th. Four finalists will give a 15-minute pitch to a jury including Mayor Menino at Down:2:Earth on April 5, 2009 at 2pm at the Hynes Convention Center.


D2E and the City of Boston invites the public to actively participate in “Pitch the City Online” through our partner, the storytelling and social networking platform that connects charismatic pioneers of social and environmental change – Change Agents – with a global network of "Backers" who want to help them in all kinds of ways. To engage with and throw your support behind Pitch the City participants visit

Down:2:Earth (D2E), an exploration into sustainable living is being held April 3-5 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston’s Back Bay. Boston's premier destination for conscious consumers, it is a marketplace for eco-friendly products, a public stage for community initiatives, and an educational forum that addresses sustainability issues. D2E emphasizes local and innovative solutions and connects consumers with progressive companies that are investing in a more sustainable future. More at

For more information about “Pitch the City” contact D2E at 617-266-6540 or

What has the City of Boston done so far?

Under Mayor Menino’s leadership, Boston has implemented numerous sustainability initiatives, and he recognizes the importance of the insights of residents when it comes to innovative ideas.

Green Zoning: In January 2007, Boston was the first major city in the nation to adopt a green standard into its zoning code. All projects over 50,000 square feet have to meet the US Green Building Council’s LEED standard.

Clean Energy: Boston is New England’s largest municipal purchaser of both bio-diesel and green power, with over 10% of the City’s electricity coming from renewable sources. The City will increase that number to at least 15 percent by 2012.

Lights Out Boston: Under this voluntary program participating building owners and managers agree to turn off or dim all architectural and internal lighting between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. during the fall migratory bird season that ends October 31, 2008. Buildings committed to this program will save money, reduce the risks of climate change, and protect wildlife.

Margin Reduction: All documents generated by city employees now have narrower margins, thus reducing the amount of pages printed. Students from a local elementary school submitted this idea.

Green Building Maintenance Order: This policy looks to reduce costs and harmful chemicals from City buildings, as well as improve operations. The policy will cover all municipal buildings maintained by the City. It has increased the purchase of environmentally preferred products like green cleaning supplies, expanded the recycling programs in City facilities, and advanced additional green policies across the City.

Boston Community Change: We care about the schools, merchants and non-profits that make up our community. The decisions that we make when we shop have a direct impact on the strength of the communities in which we live. Boston Community Change recognizes our support of local business, and empowers us to recognize those community groups that are making a difference.

Boston Community Change provides residents with a Community Change Card. When you shop at participating businesses, a portion of each transaction is returned to you as a cash rebate and a portion is directed to a non-profit or school of your choice, encouraging you to Shop Locally and Share Locally.

Boston Buying Power: In response to the volatile energy markets, Boston Buying Power will assist Boston’s small business sector with the procurement of electricity and natural gas through the purchasing power of a large buying cooperative of local businesses. The program will offer a host of benefits including: low energy pricing, long-term rate stability and the most advanced system of energy and utility management tools and services available.

Boston Buying Power will educate and direct businesses to effective programs related to effective energy planning strategies for increasing equipment and energy efficiencies, access to energy audits, rebates and assessments, and lowering overall costs and energy consumption for our local community

Sustainable Business Leader Program: Boston’s businesses want to have a lasting impression. The Sustainable Business Leader Program is a unique initiative to help 27 small to midsized local businesses become more sustainable while reducing their energy, waste, and water expenses. Participating businesses include restaurants, retailers, wholesale distributors, personal care, tourism, and financial firms and even a car wash! For more information, visit

Growing Boston Greener: A public-private partnership formed to advance Mayor Menino’s goal to plant 100,000 new trees in Boston by 2020, thereby increasing the city’s tree canopy by 20 percent, reducing the urban heat island effect, increasing carbon sequestration, and beautifying the city. This month, 1,000 trees will be planted in various neighborhoods as part of this effort.

Recycle More: Following a year-long recycling pilot program in two neighborhoods of Boston that tested the use of large 95-gallon wheeled totter carts combined with single-stream recycling, Mayor Menino announced that he’s taking the program citywide in an effort to boost recycling and waste reduction. The two pilot neighborhoods saw major increases in recycling: 53% increase in the Roslindale/Jamaica Plain pilot; and 128% increase in the South End pilot.

Nick Martin
Press Assistant to Mayor Thomas M. Menino
City of Boston
One City Hall Plaza, Room 603
Boston, MA 02201
Tel. 617-635-4461; Fax 617-635-3020

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