MORPC Concludes Planning Efforts in Local Foods and Materials Management

July 27, 2017

Two of MORPC’s sustainability working groups, the Central Ohio Regional Food Council and the Materials Management Working Group, have accomplished many goals and are nearing completion of their work at MORPC. 

Both are transitioning out of MORPC’s committee structure, and MORPC will no longer offer related programming.  However, the work of both areas remains included within the MORPC Regional Sustainability Agenda, which is a guiding document and framework for members and regional partners to work toward common goals. Core sustainability programs in air quality, water resources, greenways, and energy remain top priorities and will involve team members who previously worked on local food and materials management.

Over the past decade, the two programs have developed key sustainability plans and studies related to these topics and helped create local food councils and green community events, among others.  MORPC was the ideal place to initiate and advance these programs and to facilitate the regional planning for them. Now that much of the planning has been conducted and strategic plans have been created, MORPC recognizes that other partners in the region are better equipped to implement the action plans and to carry these programs forward.  

“Sustainability remains a key priority for MORPC and we are proud of the success in these programs. Going forward, goals around local foods and materials management remain in MORPC’s Regional Sustainability Agenda and our team will track our region’s progress,” MORPC Executive Director William Murdock said. “MORPC will continue to collaborate with other like-minded organizations and promote policies that advance all sustainability goals, but focus its internal resources on our core sustainability programming in air quality, water resources, greenways, and energy.”

The Central Ohio Regional Food Council, which MORPC established and managed from 2011 to 2017, is now affiliated with the Franklin County Local Food Council and the city-county Local Food Action Plan. Its mission is to provide links and a regional context for the plan, and to encourage sharing and collaboration among local councils in the region. Quarterly meetings will focus on speakers and site visits to projects managed by member councils.  The new lead contact is Cheryl Graffagnino of Columbus Public Health.

The Materials Management Working Group focused on recycling and waste reduction strategies that are contributing to environmental stewardship and economic development. For example, diverse community leaders and businesses discussed challenges and identified solutions for addressing organic waste. This important work will continue to be included within the Regional Sustainability Agenda to support communities and partners achieving their waste reduction goals.    

For more information on MORPC’s Sustainability Advisory Committee and Regional Sustainability Agenda, please visit our website here.