Sustainable development is that which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs by recognizing the complex balance for the accommodating of human needs without the diminishment of the health and productivity of natural systems of the shared world.
In moving forward in Stamford, three tasks, each accomplished differently, are proposed:
Codes and standards in the form of quantifiable performance targets required to be part of any new development or use of property;
Design guidelines, either mandatory or advisory, or both, that provide a reference for site planners, architects, developers, decision makers, and analysts to use in evaluating proposed projects and uses of property; and
A sustainable development program that incorporates education, politics, incentives, and inspiration.
The City of Stamford's Sustainable Development Program includes a number of objectives that are of interest to the EPB. The furthering of specific objectives also fall within the Environmental Protection Board's regulatory responsibilities. They are:
The conservation and protection of open space including the creation of Conservation Easement Areas as consequences of land use approvals for the subdivision of property, design-district/clustered development, inland wetland permits, and flood prone areas permits;
The protection of wetlands and other sensitive environmental areas including permitting decisions, the Board's policy of "no net loss of wetland areas" incorporated into the approval process, and recommendations on development proposals subject to the jurisdiction of the Planning Board, Zoning Board, and Zoning Board of Appeals;
The preservation of water quality including utilization of Best Management Practices, promotion of ground water recharge and bio filtration of surface water runoff, and the use of maintenance agreements to assure the long-term proper functioning of storm water management facilities.
The protection of the Coastal Zone through active participation in the application of the goals and objectives of Stamford's Municipal Coastal Program and Connecticut's Coastal Areas Management Act;
The mitigation of the effects of climate change through the inclusion of freeboard, no-net increase, and minimum elevation standards in Stamford's land use regulations pertaining to development within flood prone areas; and
The support of activities aimed at reducing encroachments upon nature including the promoting of naturalistic landscaping, community gardens, and resource conservation through an ongoing education effort using design manuals, fact sheets, guides for homeowners, the City's online resources, and in participation in the activities of local community groups and organizations.