The Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation, & Open Spaces Department became the first recipient today of the Green Leadership City Award, given by the Propane Education & Research Council, a Washington D.C.-based national nonprofit organization.
“The Green Leadership City Award aims to highlight public agencies that demonstrate a commitment to environmentally-friendly and sustainable practices, and the parks department at Miami-Dade is a model agency for others to follow,” said Tucker Perkins, president and CEO of PERC. “For nearly ten years, the Miami-Dade parks department has maintained the community’s green spaces with propane mowers, which reduce emissions and greenhouse gases that can be harmful for the public. They should be commended for that effort.”
As part of the award designation, PERC donated $5,000 to the Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade. The donation was announced at a celebration event held at Southridge Park.
“Using propane mowers has allowed our department to set a new standard of environmental stewardship for our community,” said Miami-Dade Parks Director Maria I. Nardi. “The financial benefits we’ve enjoyed because of lower fuel costs and an increase in crew productivity while operating with propane is just icing on the cake.”
PERC intends that by presenting this award, more municipalities, counties and public agencies become aware of the benefits from switching to using propane-fueled mowing equipment — including reduced greenhouse gas, NOx, and SOx emissions; increased productivity; and lower fuel costs.
Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation, & Open Spaces began using propane mowers in 2008 and now runs 95 percent of its fleet on the alternative fuel. The mowers are used on the county’s parks and sports fields, as well as for 122 residential communities in the county’s special tax districts. The department also contracts with PortMiami and the Miami Police Department to provide landscape maintenance services. Since switching to propane mowers, the department has seen lower fuel costs, less unexpected maintenance and downtime, and increased productivity.
From left: Nathalia A. Salas-Restrepo, Executive Director Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade County; Gil Degado, Sports Turf and Landscape Maintenance Chief; Maria I. Nardi, Director Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department
Jeremy Wishart, deputy director of business development at the Propane Education & Research Council.