Pittsburgh 1 of Only 18 U.S. Municipalities to Reach "ICLEI Milestone 5" Sustainability Goal

Oct 25, 2010, 12:11 ET from Green Building Alliance

Award Recognizes City's Achievement in Addressing Climate Change

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 25 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In recognition of its continual work to measure and reduce greenhouse gases, Pittsburgh has received a "Milestone Five" Award from ICLEI: Local Governments for Sustainability.  In ICLEI's Five Milestone program, local governments commit to inventory greenhouse emissions, set realistic reduction goals, develop and implement hands-on climate action plans that yield results, and measure the impacts of their actions. Pittsburgh is one of only 18 municipalities nationwide to receive this recognition.

Pittsburgh achieved the ICLEI Milestone 5 recognition for updating its greenhouse gas inventory, which measures emissions generated by residential, commercial, industrial, transportation, and solid waste processes within Pittsburgh city limits, along with City government operations.  In 2008, Pittsburgh's greenhouse gas emissions totaled 6.8 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e), 3% of which comes from City government operations.  Compared to similar cities, Pittsburgh's commercial sector produces a higher proportion of the city's greenhouse gas emissions, implying that energy conservation opportunities in Pittsburgh's commercial sector are substantial.  The 2008 Pittsburgh Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory is available online at www.pittsburghclimate.org/resources.htm or upon request from the Pittsburgh Climate Initiative.

Since the City's adoption of the first Pittsburgh Climate Action Plan in August 2008, significant strides have been made in completing recommendations to lower emissions from local government, businesses, universities, and residents.  City government has completed or made significant progress on 18 of the 23 municipal recommendations, including hiring the City's first Sustainability Coordinator, establishing a Sustainability Commission, installing bike racks in business districts, and increasing recycling in City buildings. The City has also secured more than $4 million in state and federal grants towards energy and climate protection activities.

The Mayor's office is a leading partner in the Pittsburgh Climate Initiative, the partnership entrusted with guiding implementation of the Pittsburgh Climate Action Plan.  The 2008 Inventory informs strategic prioritization for actions being developed as part of an updated Pittsburgh Climate Action Plan.

About the Pittsburgh Climate Initiative

The Pittsburgh Climate Initiative works collaboratively in the Pittsburgh region to reduce greenhouse gases through measureable actions.  This joint effort includes Pittsburgh's City and County governments, businesses, higher education institutions, and citizens.  The Pittsburgh Climate Initiative is generously supported by the Surdna Foundation, Pittsburgh Foundation, and through in-kind support from the Student Conservation Association's Green Cities Sustainability Corps.

SOURCE Green Building Alliance