Category: climate

How Indiana Borough is Building a Sustainable Future

Western Pennsylvania, home to coal mines and natural gas wells, might not be the first place you think of when picturing a clean energy transition, but Indiana Borough, Pennsylvania wants to change your preconceptions. It’s one of many smaller communities across the country that are embracing sustainability and renewable energy as a way towards the

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How Anchorage is Making Emergency Preparedness Inclusive

In 2018, Anchorage emerged largely unscathed from what could have been a devastating 7.1 earthquake. Following the event, Mayor Ethan Berkowitz and other city officials noted that while strict seismic building codes and significant strides in emergency preparedness had paid off, a gap in communication between limited and non-English speaking communities and the city remained.

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Legal Considerations for Carbon Mitigation by Cities

The Sabin Center for Climate Change Law seeks to partner with cities to understand the legal challenges facing cities in crafting and adopting climate-friendly laws and policies. U.S. cities, towns, villages and counties are increasingly taking the lead on climate mitigation. Dozens of U.S. cities have set greenhouse gas mitigation targets, more than 400 U.S. mayors

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5 Steps Your City Can Take to Boost Building Energy Efficiency by 10%

The year-long process to develop the 2021 International Energy Conservation Code culminates with cities’ online vote beginning November 18. In just a few days, cities across the country have a golden opportunity to boost the efficiency of America’s Model Building Energy Code (the International Energy Conservation Code, or IECC) by at least 10%. Buildings are

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Housing Resilience in San Antonio

Housing affordability is about more than the list price of a home. San Antonio, for example, is one of the fastest growing large cities in the United States. The region’s rapid economic and population growth has caused local housing costs to increase faster than AMI for nearly two decades. For residents, that means homes are increasingly

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How Austin’s Commitment to Sustainability is Driving Prosperity

By Kathleen M. O’Donnell, writer and editor at the American Institute of Architects. Austin, Texas, is a shining example of how sustainability can contribute to the development and growth of a city. Through its Office of Sustainability and the work of local architects, Austin provides a thoughtful framework for other cities to consider when crafting

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When Politics, Science and Faith Come Together

For many world religions, a respect for nature and a desire to care for our planet lies at the heart of their practices and rituals. In 2015, Pope Francis surprised the world with Laudato Si, a papal encyclical on “care for our common home.” Around the same time, 27 Buddhist and 60 Hindu leaders from

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Meet Evanston: a Mid-Sized Climate Powerhouse

Picture the scene: Approximately one thousand ten-year-olds packed into an expansive field house, explaining to their parents, teachers and other guests what worsening climate impacts will feel like in Evanston, Illinois, and how their ideas or products could help mitigate these effects. The crowd convened at Evanston Township High School (notably, the country’s largest high school

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How Sustainability is Changing Regional Cooperation

Mayors in towns large and small recognize the power of collaboration — the strength in numbers. In my last blog post, we discussed the Greenest Region Compact (GRC), which featured 115 municipalities and 10 councils of government in Northeast Illinois as signatories at last count. It is the largest regional collaboration on sustainability in the United

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You Can’t Meet Energy and Climate Goals Without Building Efficiency

This is guest post by Bill Fay, Coalition Director, Energy Efficient Codes Coalition There is no national policy issue that is as largely in cities’ hands to develop as writing building energy codes. With little effort and no expenditure of public funds, cities, towns and villages can help write the nation’s building energy code. All

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