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The Miami-Dade Cooperative Extension Division will host a Rain Barrel & Conservation Workshop on Monday, September 27 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Bet Shira Synagogue located at 7500 S.W. 120th Street in Pinecrest. In addition to creating their own rain barrels, participants will be able to exchange their old showerheads and light bulbs for new ones that are more energy efficient.

The Miami-Dade County Department of Solid Waste Management has teamed up with Autocar and Parker Hannifin to become the first municipal solid waste agency in the United States to use Parker Hannifin’s unique hybrid–drive system in its waste collection fleet.  The first of six hybrid waste collection vehicles will be delivered September 15 to Miami-Dade County in a ceremony with Mayor Carlos Alvarez and other dignitaries at 9 a.m. at the Stephen P. Clark Center Building, 111 NW 1 Street, in downtown Miami.

One of the largest and most popular artificial reef programs in the nation, Miami-Dade County’s Artificial Reef Program, will be expanding tomorrow, September 8th with the sinking of two vessels: The “M/V Shark” and the “Catharina.” Both vessels were obtained by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and donated to the Artificial Reef Program, which is managed by the Department of Environmental Resources Management (DERM).  Both vessels are scheduled to be placed at the Haulover Artificial Reef Site (due east of Haulover Inlet) on Wednesday, September 8th at 11am (Weather and sea conditions dependent).  Once deployed, both vessels will rest in approximately 200’ of water where they will help to enhance the marine habitat in the area; as well as, provide additional fisheries resources.

Miami-Dade County’s Office of Sustainability announces the launch of the Renovation for Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) program for businesses to implement energy efficiency retrofits. REEL, administered by the South Florida Regional Planning Council, is a $1.5 million revolving loan fund that provides funding to businesses to institute capital improvements to their properties that result in a reduction in the electrical energy consumed by the business. All local businesses in Miami-Dade County may apply for REEL.