Monday, October 22, 2018

Bloomberg Foundation Names Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, 2 Other Cities Winners In American Cities Climate Challenge

UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Action and former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg joined Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto in West End Overlook Park Sunday to announce Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Boston, and Washington D.C. as the next round of winning cities for the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge.
These four cities join six other cities – Atlanta, Los Angeles, Portland, San Diego, San Jose and Seattle – as the first half of the total twenty cities that will be named winners of the Climate Challenge.
The Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge is a $70 million-dollar program that will accelerate these 20 cities’ efforts to tackle climate change and promote a sustainable future for residents.
Through the Climate Challenge – which is part of Bloomberg’s American Cities Initiative – Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Boston, and Washington D.C. are accepted into a two-year acceleration program that will provide cities powerful new resources and access to cutting-edge support to help meet or beat their near-term carbon reduction goals.
Bloomberg highlighted the cities’ innovative and ambitious climate action plans for the Challenge, all aimed to reduce air pollution and city-wide emissions with specific projects to reform their respective transit and buildings sectors – two areas traditionally responsible for 80 percent total of all citywide emissions and over which mayors have significant authority.
Bloomberg recognized Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, and Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser for their commitment to ambitious climate action and securing a cleaner, safer, and healthier environment and economy for their residents.
“When Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the Climate Challenge, cities all across the country, with both Republican and Democratic mayors, put forward thoughtful and innovative proposals,” said Bloomberg. “Selecting the ones with the boldest goals — and the most realistic plans for reaching them — was not easy. But Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Boston, and D.C. all stood out, and we’re glad to include them in the group of winners. With our federal government asleep at the wheel, cities are more important than ever in the fight against climate change — and these cities are stepping up to the challenge. Congratulations to them all.”
Documentary Paris To Pittsburgh
Standing with Mayor Peduto, who plays a key role in Bloomberg Philanthropies’ upcoming National Geographic documentary Paris to Pittsburgh, Mike also announced that mayors in select U.S. cities will join the conversation on local climate action by hosting screenings of the film on December 3rd and convening community discussions on climate change.  Click Here to view trailer.
The screenings, which will be held in Charleston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New York City, Orlando, and Pittsburgh, will emphasize the need for the bottom-up climate action strategies being taken by winners of the Climate Challenge.
“Pittsburgh is a city built on innovation. We’re so proud that we’ve done our part to uphold the Paris Agreement, and we’re ready to do even more.” said Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto. “With the American Cities Climate Challenge, we can expand our clean energy program not just in Pittsburgh, but statewide, and we’re ready to get to work.”
$2.5 Million Grant
Winners of the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge will be provided robust technical assistance and a support package valued at up to $2.5 million per city.
These resources include a philanthropy-funded team member to facilitate the development and passage of high impact policies, training for senior leadership to assist with implementation of their proposed climate plans, and citizen engagement support to maximize community buy-in.
Pittsburgh plans to use support from the Climate Challenge to create and implement a benchmarking policy for buildings. Additionally, Pittsburgh will work with Bloomberg partners to develop and roll out a statewide clean energy financing program, scale renewable power through community solar programs, and expand bike and pedestrian infrastructure throughout the city.  Click Here for more.
Philadelphia plans to scale up energy efficiency projects across homes and the city’s largest commercial buildings through policies, programs, job training and other resources, as well as dramatically increase the generation and use of renewable energy by leading and supporting institutional clean energy procurement programs.
In working with Bloomberg partners, Philadelphia will also work increase trips by bicycle, walking, and transit by 5 percent by 2025 or sooner through the implementation of Connect: Philadelphia’s Strategic Transportation Plan and accelerate transition of 6,000 municipal vehicles to electric, and work with SEPTA to electrify its fleet

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