Mayor Karl Dean launching the Go Green Nashville campaign

Mayor Karl Dean launching the Go Green Nashville campaign

Sing it loud and be proud: traditional country music's capital city Nashville has been rated one of the most sustainable cities in the southern states of the USA.

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has awarded it a platinum (the highest) rating in the utility's new “Valley Sustainable Communities” program.

Consultants Boyette Strategic Advisors (BSA) who are administering the project on behalf of the sponsors, TVA, said that many factors contributed to Nashville’s platinum rating, including new and retrofitted sustainable buildings and business parks in the public and private sectors. Headline elements include:

Nashville's Music City Center building

Nashville's Music City Center building

“Sustainability is important to me and is one of the reasons that my office created the Green Ribbon Committee to design a roadmap for Nashville to be the greenest city in the Southeast,” said Mayor Dean.

“This platinum rating is recognition of the efforts and commitment of our Metro government and community partners in the private sector toward meeting that goal. It is vital for cities to stay focused on sustainability to continue to improve the quality of life for all and attract new residents and businesses.”

Sustainability has become a key issue for economic development organizations and communities, as more corporations have demonstrated an increasing commitment to sustainability.

More than 90 percent of corporate real estate executives who responded to a CoreNet Global survey on sustainability said that it is a consideration in their company location decisions. They cited reasons such as reduced operating costs for increased profitability and greater employee satisfaction.

The Bridge Building Nashville

The Bridge Building Nashville

“This platinum status as a sustainable community reinforces the importance of smart growth throughout our region and provides additional leverage for economic development in the Nashville region,” said Ralph Schulz, president and CEO of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. “Sustainability is increasingly important to corporations when considering cities to relocate business operations; this designation differentiates Nashville from other major cities around the U.S."

The Tennessee Valley Authority, based in Chattanooga, Tennessee, provides electricity for 9 million people as well as flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system, in parts of seven southeastern states (Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia) at prices below the national average.

It also helps utilities and state and local governments with economic development. It is not privately owned nor does it receive taxpayers' money. It's a not for profit social enterprise owned by the U.S. government.

TVA senior vice president of economic development John Bradley said that "TVA Economic Development’s mission involves working with communities in our region to help them be ready when economic growth opportunities occur. The city of Nashville’s attainment of platinum status highlights their strong sustainability assets."

TVA will be actively marketing sustainable communities to global site selection consultants and select companies.

"The platinum-level designation recognizes that a community has made a significant and comprehensive commitment to sustainability and also has thoroughly integrated economic development into its sustainability efforts,” said Del Boyette, president/CEO of BSA.