It’s not always easy being green, but with their new “Best Practices” Web site, Green Cities California (GCC) is working to make it a little easier.

GCC is a collaborative of 10 of California’s most environmentally progressive jurisdictions, including Santa Monica. These jurisdictions teamed up to create the Web site, launched Oct. 21, as a tool for cities looking to incorporate environmentally sound policies.

The Web site is a gold mine of information for those interested in environmental policy, those affiliated with it said. It contains extensive details — including policy documents, background research and legal analysis — of almost 50 cutting-edge environmental policies adopted in the GCC’s various jurisdictions. These policies are organized into seven categories: energy, waste, urban design, urban nature, transportation, environmental health and water.

The Web site was created with local governments in mind. According to GCC director Carol Misseldine, many cities — especially small cities — have neither the time nor the resources to dedicate to the task of developing environmental legislation.

“Now any jurisdiction can benefit from the hard work completed by other jurisdictions, and simply modify the policy to suit their locale,” said Misseldine.

The Web site,, is free to use and accessible to anyone. Among the policies found on the Web site is Santa Monica’s green building ordinance, adopted in May 2008.

“This collaborative effort will save communities valuable staff time and money by providing the resources required for change, eliminating the need for individual cities to constantly reinvent the wheel,” said Dean Kubani, director of the Office of Sustainability and the Environment for City Hall.

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