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Town of Riverdale Park Receives Prestigious Sustainable Maryland Certified Award at Maryland Municipal League Conference


Press Release


Contact: Mike Hunninghake, Program Manager, Sustainable Maryland, 301-405-7956,

Town of Riverdale Park Receives Prestigious Sustainable Maryland Certified Award at Maryland Municipal League Conference

College Park, MD (October 12, 2020) – The Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland announced that the Town of Riverdale Park was one of eleven Maryland municipalities honored at the Sustainable Maryland Awards Ceremony at the Maryland Municipal League’s virtual annual Fall Conference last Friday.

A detailed summary of Riverdale Park’s sustainability Actions can be found in their Certification Report, attached as a PDF.

Highlights of Riverdale Park’s recent accomplishments include:

  • Adopted Resolution 2020-R-18 for the purpose of establishing a commitment to policies, programs and initiatives that aim to undo the effects of systemic racism and unequivocally support and defend African Americans and Black people.
  • In response to COVID-19, established several food security initiatives, including the Farmers Market Dollars program, and the  “Bountiful Buckets” program, allowing residents of multi-family buildings to grow and harvest produce on their balconies and patios, turning unused space into a food asset.
  • Installed a white roof at Town Hall, which will reduce summer energy use by 10–40% by leaving the interior cooler than it would otherwise be, saving money and reducing carbon emissions.
  • Created a Town Tree Plan and Inventory, with more than 900 street trees tagged thus far.

"I'm extremely happy that the Town of Riverdale Park and our Sustainability Committee has again been recognized by Sustainable Maryland”, said Mayor Alan K. Thompson. “Riverdale Park has been part of this program since it began, and I'm glad to take a few moments to recognize our achievements in being a great place to live, work, and visit while ensuring the sustainable success of the environment, our local businesses, and our people." 

According to Mike Hunninghake, Program Manager for Sustainable Maryland, “This year’s eleven Sustainable Maryland Certified communities represent a broad cross-section of the state, from small towns to large cities, from rural agricultural areas to densely urban communities. Each one has demonstrated a firm and on-going commitment to meeting the urgent sustainability challenges we face here in Maryland, and as part of a planetary community in crisis.”

A short video of the Sustainable Maryland Awards Ceremony on Oct. 9 is here:

For detailed information about Riverdale Park’ssustainability initiatives, please contact Ryan Chelton, Director of Development Services,, 240-825-5333


Sustainable Maryland Certification: To achieve certification, municipalities are required to form a Green Team comprised of local residents, community leaders, municipal staff and officials; complete a variety sustainability-related Actions worth a total of at least 150 points (including two mandatory actions and two of six priority actions), and submit the appropriate documentation as evidence that the Sustainable Maryland Certified requirements have been satisfied. The Sustainable Maryland Action Menu can be seen here:

The complete list of 2020 newly certified (denoted by *) and re-certified communities includes:

Bel Air (first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

Berwyn Heights (first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

Boonsboro (first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

Chesapeake Beach (first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

Frostburg(first certified in 2017)

Greenbelt (2020 Sustainability Champion - highest point total; first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

*Landover Hills (NEW!)

Mount Airy(first certified in 2017)

Riverdale Park (first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

Takoma Park (first certified 2014, re-certified in 2017)

University Park (first certified in 2014, re-certified in 2017)

Our 2020 Sustainability Champion: This year’s Sustainability Champion is the City of Greenbelt which amassed an impressive 795 points on their application, more than any other community in 2020, and since the inception of the program.

A full report on each certified community’s Actions can be viewed here:

Sustainable Maryland Certified Municipalities as of 2020 (9th full year of the program):

  • Total Municipalities Sustainable Maryland Certified: 40 (25% of Maryland’s municipalities)
  • Total Municipalities Sustainable Maryland Registered: 79 (50% of Maryland’s municipalities)


About Sustainable Maryland: Sustainable Maryland is an initiative of the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland that is designed to support Maryland's 157 municipalities as they look for cost-effective and strategic ways to protect their natural assets and revitalize their communities. Using best practices in resource areas like water, energy, planning, health, food, and economy, a municipality can earn points toward sustainability certification.Sustainable Maryland offers a customizable menu of concrete actions, allowing communities to select initiatives that best fit their specific needs. This free and voluntary program, with the support of the Maryland Municipal League and the US Environmental Protection Agency helps communities choose a direction for their greening efforts; complete their chosen actions with help from program tools, trainings, expert guidance, and other resources; and be recognized statewide for their accomplishments. For more information about Sustainable Maryland: