Pennsylvania Chapter Cool Cities Campaign

 

 

You can make it happen!

So what is a Cool City? These are cities that have made a commitment to stopping global warming by signing the U.S. Mayors' Climate Protection Agreement, conducting emissions inventories and creating climate action plans.

The Cool Cities campaign empowers municipal residents and local leaders to join together to encourage their cities to implement best practices for energy efficiency, sustainable design, and clean energy solutions to save taxpayer money, create green jobs and markets for green businesses, and build a sustainable future.

Cool cities factsheet

Cool Cities Pennsylvania Resources

How We Can Reduce Carbon Emissions by 2% Every Year

What Cities in Pennsylvania have already become Cool Cities? They include Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Reading, York, Easton, Lancaster, Kutztown, Braddock, Erie, Lower Makefield Twp,, Marple Twp., Radnor Twp., Nether Providence Twp., Lackawanna County, Scranton, Wilkes_Barre, Allentown and Bethlehem.

 

Get involved in Cool Cities events
Like the Lights Out Event held in Scranton.

 

How Can You Help?

• Take Action Volunteer in this grassroots effort to secure the signature of your mayor on the Climate Protection Agreement.

• Volunteer to work with organizations, businesses, residents, universities and your municipal government on implementation for CO2 reductions.

• Volunteer to help out with a local energy educational program in your community.

 

Want to Learn More?

Attend or host a Cool Cities presentation.

 

 

Ready to Help Out Current Cool City Campaigns in PA?

Scranton and Wilkes Barre - Northeast PA Volunteer Contact: Frank Muraca. A lot of momentum here! Lackawanna County rolls out hybrid fleet

New! Greater Harrisburg Area - Contact: Thomas Au

New! Join the campaign in Altoona, PA Contact: Laura Piraino

• Help with the May Cool Cities Green Tour in Harrisburg contact Laura Piraino

• Offer to host of showing and discussion of the film Kilowatt Ours in your community. Contact Laura Piraino

Interested in helping to make your city a Cool City, but it is not listed above? Contact Dennis R. Winters, PA Chapter Cool Cities Coordinator

5 Things You Can Do to Stop Global Warming

Federal Stimulus Package Resources for Implementing Cool Cities Initiatives, including emissions inventories, climate action plans, efficiency improvements, and renewable energy installations.

Wilkes-Barre

Wilkes-Barre gets Cool
Courtesy Laura Piraino

 

Economic Benefits of Climate Action Plans

    1) Saving energy through conservation and efficiency saves taxpayer money.

    2) Local, Green Jobs are created in the Commonwealth, by supporting high performance building and municipal efficiency renovation projects, mass transit systems, efficient fleets, and generating nonpolluting renewable energy right here in Pennsylvania.

    3) Cities with Climate Action Plans may also be better positioned to secure state funding and stimulus package funding for improvements, especially since they have already identified specific targets and a course of action.

    4) There may be a university in your area to partner with to support the city with additional technical assistance.

    5) There are already successful best practices that other Cool Cities have implemented, so there is no need for municipal staff to start from scratch. Check out the 2007 US Conference of Mayors Best Practices Guide for Communities.

    6) Doing nothing to reduce greenhouse gases is much more costly than taking action to reduce them. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, Pennsylvania is already experiencing the impacts of global warming, and unless action is taken, will experience some costly consequences.

    Scranton

    Lackawanna Co and Scranton become Cool
    Courtesy D. Schreffler

     

    Economic Benefits of the Cool Cities Carbon Reduction Program

    Saves Taxpayers Money: Conducting an emissions inventory and creating a climate action plan not only will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but by implementing best practices in energy efficiency and green building, will save the taxpayer money by reducing energy consumption and the operating costs of the city. Climate change software can provide not only emissions data, but also a forecast of the cost benefit analysis of adopting model best practices, so that officials can make informed choices about implementation.

    Shovel Ready: Creating an climate action plan will provide the city with the background research to 1) prioritize carbon reduction efforts; 2) quantify reductions to meet future federal requirements; 3) offer “shovel ready” grant proposals consistent with foundation, regional, state and federal carbon reduction objectives.

    Workforce Development: Implementation projects create desirable “green” jobs in energy efficiency and green building, approximately 7 times the number of jobs than coal fired power plant investments. Jobs are created from installation, indirect and direct services, materials and from energy savings, and distributed where the jobs are needed-in our buildings landscapes.

    “Green” cities attract diverse, competitive educated professionals who are looking for 1) a green lifestyle and the amenities a sustainably planned community provides; 2) a place to establish a business, and 3) secure workplaces in locations that will be leading the post carbon economic technology and manufacturing transition.

    Municipal carbon reduction programs, purchases and favorable policies attract green businesses looking for strong markets. California experienced a sharp growth in green jobs and investment capital

    Cap and Trade Opportunities: Completing a carbon emissions inventory positions the city to benefit from cap and trade programs which may be adopted within the next few years.

    Avoided Costs: Additional savings will be realized through avoided costs, which include 1) improved air quality, resulting in fewer air quality-related public health impacts, such as asthma and other respiratory ailments; 2) compliance with federal air quality regulations, preserving federal funding for local projects, 3) future taxes on carbon, which are predicted to increase substantially over the next decade, 4) reduced need for expensive new power generation and transmission and 5) long term economic losses due to the impacts of increased global warming, which may include declining revenues in hardwood forests, crops like sweet corn, apple and grapes, dairy products, trout populations, and outdoor northeast tourism (2008 Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) Report Climate Change in Pennsylvania: Impacts and Solutions for the Keystone State.)

    Join the Party: Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Reading, York, Easton, Lancaster, Oxford, Kutztown, Erie, Allentown, Bethlehem, Narbeth Borough, Marple, Lower Makefield, Leechburg, Scranton, WilkesBarre, and Lackawanna County, and Braddock have already signed the Mayor’s Climate Change Agreement and are in different stages of Climate Action Planning. The Lackawanna County Commissioners voted to pass a Cool Counties Climate Change resolution in March 2009, providing the city with collaborative partners and opportunities to maximize more efficient staffing work-plans to participate.

    The DEP Greenhouse Gas Pilot Program awarded $300,000 in March 2009 to Allegheny, Bucks, Butler, Centre, Crawford, and Delaware Counties to complete emissions inventories and create Climate Action Plans. This offers additional opportunities to collaborate and share resources through the Cool Cities statewide network.