Naperville Environment and Sustainability Task Force (NEST) is an all-volunteer organization that advises the City government and community on sustainability and greenhouse gas reduction. NEST was founded in 2018 and became an official City task force in 2019. They have approximately 50 active volunteers, including engineers, scientists, health care professionals, computer programmers, and others.
Sustainability means leaving behind a world for future generations that is not diminished of opportunity or resources. To achieve this, NEST volunteers research, educate, and advise on issues related to Energy, Waste, Transportation, Building & Development, and Natural Resources. Volunteer teams meet at least monthly and their goals include transitioning Naperville away from fossil fuels and towards clean energy, making our buildings more energy efficient, supporting the transition to electric vehicles, advancing safe walking and biking routes, reducing waste, and increasing biodiversity. These efforts will make Naperville an even more livable city and in most cases will save residents and the City money.
How NEST advises the City of Naperville
The City adopted a Sustainability Plan in 2021 based on recommendations made by NEST in their “Sustainable Naperville 2036” report. This report outlines actions and recommendations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the City and citizens of Naperville. It focused on what can be done locally to promote a sustainable climate. Recent efforts by NEST include mobilizing community education and support on transitioning Naperville away from our current coal-based electricity source and advocating for electric school buses. NEST is also mobilizing to gain support for updated energy efficiency codes for our buildings and improving the biking and walking plans by the city.
NEST volunteers aim to help throughout the community
NEST volunteers also focus on community engagement by educating through social media, their website, and presentations to various organizations. Monthly community meetings, the 3rd Monday evening of each month, are open to the public and feature experts on sustainability and climate change. NEST believes that community engagement is needed in order for Naperville to make rapid progress on reducing our contributions to climate change, and ultimately achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions.