across our community


We are highlighting the best practices from our community partners that help us create a sustainable and resilient community.

Local partnerships enhance our ability to promote new innovative industries, environmental sustainability and better connected communities.

So many local businesses, non-profits and governmental partners (e.g., Carrboro and Orange County) are doing their part to make Chapel Hill a place where people thrive. Our partners enhance sustainability and resilience by strengthening environmental stewardship, social equity and/or economic development—all to help us achieve our community goals.

Continue scrolling to find some of the best practices taken from Chapel Hill’s partners.

How local businesses do their part

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Environmental Sustainability

Several local businesses are becoming a part of the green movement because it offers many economic and environmental opportunities. Here are some ideas from local businesses, non-profits and more:

  • Installing green roofs

  • Composting and recycling

  • Installing electric vehicle charging stations or bike racks

  • Updating building infrastructure that conserves energy


Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

There is so much a local business, non-profit or other organization can do to improve the lives of their employees. Here’s what some local organizations have done on behalf of the people who support them every day:

  • Paying a living wage

  • Being conscious of the needs of working parents

  • Being conscious of personal biases, race, socioeconomic status and religion while hiring

  • Volunteering in the community


Economic and Financial Stewardship

Economically sustainable organizations are those that make decisions to create opportunities, innovate and add to our local economy. They do so in support of our community and our environment. Here are some local examples:

  • Reducing energy use

  • Using locally sourced food

  • Attract local investors

  • Investing back into the community by donating time/money/services

university of north carolina

The University serves as a vital partner in our journey to resiliency and sustainability. With their help we have created one of largest fare free bus systems in the country, a unique Launch Program to help start ups succeed and more.

The University itself is doing more to create opportunities for sustainability. For example, the three zeros environmental initiative, solar farm initiative, and green dinning services promote environmental sustainability while enhancing the local economy with innovation.


Chapel hill-carrboro school system

The Chapel Hill-Carrboro School System is committed to integrating sustainability in the education system. Environmental sustainability in the schools comes everywhere from student initiated programs to district policies. Some programs include:

  • CHCCS compost project. Students from elementary and middles schools are expected to divert as much as 143 tons from the local landfill. This initiative began after students from Phillips Middle School created the Trash Terminators 2.0 club developed the program.

  • Green Ribbon Schools Award. This award is a national recognition for schools who promote sustainability and environmental education.

The secret is out! The Guardian named Chapel Hill One of the Best Towns and Small Cities in the US! See the story here.

Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership

The Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership brings together the resources of the Town, University and downtown community to maintain, enhance and promote downtown as the social, cultural, and spiritual center of Chapel Hill through economic development.

  • Improving the visual appeal of downtown

  • Rebuilding downtown as a mixed use center of retail, service, professional, governmental, institutional, and residential uses

To serve and advance the business interests of our community and build a sustainable community where business thrives.
— Chamber of CH & Carrboro
  • Leadership Chapel Hill is designed to inform and develop emerging business leaders. By understanding the problems of the community business leaders can make decisions that address them while continuing to develop economic opportunities.

  • Small Business Energy Initiative is a grant from the US Department of Energy partnering with Duke Energy and the Institute for Market Transformation to help businesses become more energy efficient.