Author: Carolyn Berndt

Five Things City Leaders Should Know About the Paris Withdrawal

After President Donald Trump announced Thursday that the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, hundreds of city leaders spoke out to denounce the decision. From New York to Pittsburgh to Dubuque, Iowa, mayors and councilmembers pledged to oppose the withdrawal, work on alternative actions, and continue to address climate change in their own

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Presidential Candidates: Here’s What You Should Learn from Flint, Michigan

Using the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, as a case study, here are three reasons why the presidential candidates need to pay attention to and address city priorities. As the Republican and Democratic candidates took to the debate stage in South Carolina last week, they attempted to persuade voters, particularly those in the upcoming early

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Climate Impacts on Water: Going to Extremes

Climate change is introducing new challenges and risks, and exasperating existing ones. Getty Images Extreme weather events, extreme drought and extreme flooding are among the impacts that climate chance is and will have on water quality and availability in cities. According to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor Report, 30 percent of the contiguous United States

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Protecting Federalism: Still the Battle Cry of Cities

The year 1995 was a time of “reinventing government,” with both the Clinton Administration and the new Republican majority Congress pledging to streamline government, balance the federal budget, and shift policy responsibilities to states, local governments and the private sector. Fundamental questions about the roles and responsibilities of government took center stage in Washington. One

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Science Confirms (Again) What Cities Already Know: Climate Change is Happening Now

The continuing drought in the west and wildfires burning in the plains are real world examples—happening right now—of what scientists say is evidence of climate change. Remember the floods in Colorado last year and Hurricane Sandy the year before? Those too are indicative of the kinds of extreme weather events the U.S. will face in

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3 Ways Cities are Leading in Energy Innovation

This is the second blog in a series on why the key to protecting our environment lies in city innovation. It’s no accident that “energy” is one of the main components of city sustainability plans. If we drilled down, much of these efforts likely focus on buildings. With buildings representing 39 percent of the nation’s

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EPA Local Government Advisory Committee Key to Local-Federal Partnership

This week the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Local Government Advisory Committee (LGAC) met in Washington, DC to discuss local perspectives on climate, water, resiliency and environmental justice with Administration officials from EPA headquarters, regional administrators and the White House. At a time when so many environmental issues are at the forefront for communities and

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Building More Resilient Communities

With nearly 1500 mayors, council members, city staff and others coming to DC next week for the Congressional City Conference, it’s a great opportunity to educate our members about federal issues affecting cities and launch lobbying efforts around our 2014 federal priorities. Among the priorities this year is supporting community resilience. By raising awareness on

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Renewed Push on Energy Efficiency Bill, But It’s Not Over Yet

There is little to get excited about in Congress these days, but the reintroduction of a bipartisan energy efficiency bill is welcome news. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Rob Portman (R-OH) reintroduced their marquee energy efficiency bill, the Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act, with the addition of ten bipartisan amendments and ten new sponsors

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Supreme Court Greenhouse Gas Case has Implications for Local Adaptation, Resilience Efforts

As the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments today on a case that could have implications for the Administration’s plans to regulate greenhouse gas emissions, cities continue to seek federal policies and programs that will support their local climate adaptation and resilience efforts. The question in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA is whether the

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