History of SF Environment

Date: 
Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Commission on the Environment was created by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in 1993, and charged with developing a Sustainability Plan for San Francisco. The original Commission was replaced by a seven-member Commission appointed by the Mayor as a result of a voter initiative passed in 1996, which also created the Department of the Environment. A citywide effort, involving hundreds of San Franciscans, culminated in the adoption of the City’s Sustainability Plan by the Board of Supervisors in 1997. The Department was initially responsible only for public outreach, implementing the City’s Integrated Pest Management Program, and implementing Green Building.  By 2000, the Department had eight employees, and added a Clean Air Program and an Energy Program. In 2001, the Department grew to more than 30 employees after integrating all the functions of the Solid Waste Management Program, including toxics reduction and recycling.  Today SF Environment has more than 115 employees, and has active programs in the area of Climate, Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency, Clean Air Transportation, Outreach, Environmental Justice, Green Jobs (Environment Now), Zero Waste, Toxic Reduction, School Education,  Green Building, and Urban Forestry.