The Green Needham Collaborative is a community-based group bringing together people and organizations within the town of Needham who want to build a more sustainable community through collaborative efforts in energy and the environment.
At our core is the belief that it is through collaboration - by involving individual citizens, groups, civic organizations, businesses, the schools, local colleges and the municipality - that we will succeed in improving the sustainability of our community and making a positive impact on energy efficiency, energy use and climate change.
Our objective is to create and sustain local projects, education and action to:
- Reduce the use of fossil fuels
- Save money on energy
- Promote innovation in energy conservation and production and use of renewable energy
- Offer collaborative and educational opportunities for Olin College and Needham K-12 students.
The idea for the Green Needham Collaborative was conceived by a small group of citizens and took shape with the first meeting at Olin College in September of 2006. Since that time, over 200 different individuals have attended at least one of Green Needham's regular meetings and over 125 have signed on as members. Through its members and others who participate, the Green Needham Collaborative serves as an umbrella to engage a wide swath of the Needham community with collaborating organizations including:
- Needham Public Schools (including the High School Environmental Club and the Pollard Environmental Action Team)
- Olin College
- Town of Needham
- Needham League of Women Voters Climate Action Committee
- Parent groups/PTCs (coordinating the Green Kids program)
- Businesses and busines organizations
- Groups from Needham's Houses of Worship
Green Needham action teams develop and execute projects like the Wind Power Feasibility Study, while the organization also provides a focal point and access to resources for collaborating organizations that have their own initiatives underway. Green Needham is developing interest groups to share information and provide education to the community on sustainability. Green Needham's regular meetings and online wiki (which serves as a collaborative workspace as well as providing content to our web site) enable regular interactions among members and participating organizations. Two co-chairs provide ongoing coordination and a steering committee provides longer-term guidance and decision making.
Green Needham is a nexus - a connection point for the entire community - for sustainability initiatives. Accordingly, Green Needham supports, advances and publicizes activities and projects initiated by collaborating organizations as well as those generated internally. Some of the projects include:
- 10% Energy Challenge
- Wind Power Feasibility Study
- Community Solar Challenge
- Community outreach & education
- Green Tips
- Green Kids
- Support for schools recycling initiative
- Newton-Needham Chamber of Commerce Green Business Expo