Growing Greener:
Making the Right Choices

"A sustainable business is resource efficient, respects the environment and is a good neighbor.” 
                                                   -- Phil Harding

Being green is all about making choices – recycling, using a water bottle, taking our own bags to the grocery store. One of the best choices for our environment is going Metro. In fact, one person riding Metro to work for a year instead of driving prevents nearly 5,000 pounds of harmful pollutants from entering our air, helps to reduce greenhouse gases and conserves dwindling fossil fuels.

As a business, Metro has made the choice to preserve our environment by maintaining a dynamic sustainability program that is quickly earning national attention. See our Environmental Policy to learn more. 

Metro Goes Green:

Metro is how 1 in 4 downtown workers commute each day and it's also the green way to go. Nationally, public transit ridership saves the United States 4.2 billion gallons of gasoline each year while cutting traffic congestion and pollution.

At Metro, we go even greener by...

  • Using rainwater to wash buses
  • Burning waste oil to heat garages
  • Recycling and reusing motor fluids such as antifreeze, refrigerant and power steering fluid
  • Recycling paper, plastic, cans

Hybrid Buses:

Hybrid buses are a green alternative to traditional diesel-powered buses powered both by an electric motor and a diesel engine. Electricity is generated by the engine and by the braking action of the bus as it slows down or stops, which is called "regenerative braking." The result: smooth acceleration with reduced emissions.

Metro operates several hybrid buses in its fleet. Each hybrid saves about 30% in fuel use over the 12-year useful life of the bus while reducing emissions and improving air quality. Additionally, these buses provide an improved customer experience with smooth accelerating and a quieter ride. 

Metro's employees are making sustainability a way of life:

Taking the American Public Transportation Association’s (APTA) Sustainability Commitment

- Conducts solid waste and energy audits 
- Developed comprehensive recycling program that reduced trash pick-up costs by 51% and saved nearly $10K annually
- Used grant funding to purchase a cardboard baler that will reduce pick-up costs, while generating income from used cardboard sales
- Established an extensive recycling program that has diverted more than 79,450 pounds of waste from landfills (size of 3 buses)
- Recycled more than 45 tons of scrap metal, producing $14K in revenue
- Upgrading fluorescent lights to LED through Metro's operations facilities
- Established an employee Sustainability Steering Committee and Green Team to promote environmental practices among employees
- Creating “The Recycler”,  a monthly employee sustainability e-newsletter 
- Engaging employees at quarterly sustainability outreach and educational events

Federal Transportation Administration’s (FTA) Environmental & Sustainability Management System (ESMS) Training

ESMS is a collection of best practices based on industry standards that give organizations the tools to analyze, control and reduce its environmental impact and operate with greater efficiency and control.  Elements of the program include:

  • Identifying environmental risks  and consequences
  • Creating programs to reduce risks related to threats
  • Developing goals and objectives
  • Classifying compliance obligations
  • Ensuring employee awareness
  • Measuring progress
  • Making improvements


Forming a Sustainability Steering Committee &  a Green Team representing Metro’s diverse workforce

Metro’s Sustainability Steering Committee directs environmental policy, recommends changes to processes and procedures to increase efficiency and helps to promote a green workplace for all. Members come from all areas within Metro. Metro's Green Team is responsible for organizing the quarterly education and outreach events for sustainability. 

For more information, contact:
TJ Thorn, Vice President, Safety & Security/Chief Safety Officer

Awards and Recognition:

In February 2017, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency awarded Metro its 2017 Achievement Level of the Encouraging Environmental Excellent Program Award. In 2016, Metro received APTA’s Bronze level recognition as well as Hamilton County Recycling and Solid Waste District’s “Recycling at Work” 2016 annual award. Metro is also a recipient of the 2012 Cincinnati Earth Day Environmental Award.