Philly Takes another step towards being the Greenest City in America

From US EPA Region 3 Press Office

EPA Welcomes Philadelphia as its Newest Green Power Community Partner

PHILADELPHIA ( June 20, 2012) – Today, EPA Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin welcomed the City of Philadelphia as a new member of EPA’s national Green Power Communities initiative, showing that a major metropolitan area can reduce its carbon pollution, improve public health, and help expand the nation’s renewable energy supply. The announcement came during an event at Citizens Bank Park, where Garvin also praised the Philadelphia Phillies and other organizations whose efforts for a cleaner environment are helping Philadelphia achieve its clean energy goals.

“As EPA’s largest Green Power Community, Philadelphia is among the elite local governments that have met or exceeded their pledges to our nation’s clean energy future by purchasing green, renewable power,” said Garvin. “I commend Mayor Michael Nutter for his continuous pursuit of numerous, practical ways to make Philadelphia a model green city.”

As EPA Green Power Communities, Philadelphia and 33 other towns and cities across the U.S. collectively buy more than 4.2 billion kilowatt hours of green power annually, an amount that would otherwise produce carbon dioxide emissions from the conventional electricity of more than 367,000 average American homes. Green power is generated from renewable resources such as solar, wind, geothermal, biogas, and low-impact hydropower – environmentally-preferable resources that produce no net increase of harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2006, Philadelphia joined EPA’s Green Power Partnership, a launching pad for becoming a Green Power Community. As part of Philadelphia’s Greenworks plan, the city pledges that by 2015, 20 percent of the electricity used in Philadelphia will come from alternative energy sources. The city’s municipal operations have already met this goal, using more than 127 million kilowatt-hours of green power, including generating solar electricity onsite at the city-owned Southeast Water Pollution Control facility.

Last week, the Phillies announced its agreement to purchase 100 percent of its electricity usage from local wind and solar generation providers. Other major contributors to the city’s green power purchase success include EPA Green Power Partners such as the Eagles organization, the University of Pennsylvania, Drexel University, Philadelphia University, the Academy of Natural Sciences, Yards Brewing Company, along with residents choosing green power. Philadelphia organizations and businesses, including members of the Philadelphia Green Power Community Collaborative are also actively committed to helping Philadelphia maintain its standing as a leading Green Power Community and increase its use of renewable energy.

More information on EPA’s Green Power Communities: www.epa.gov/greenpower/communities
More information on EPA’s Green Power Partnership Program: www.epa.gov/greenpower
Philadelphia’s Green Power Community Collaborative: www.PhiladelphiaGreenPower.com
Green power providers in Pennsylvania: www.papowerswitch.com

GreenTreks documentary on Philly greening to air on WHYY Apr 26 & 29

If you’ve been following us for any period of time, you know we’re stoked to be a part of Philadelphia’s transformation from down on our luck wannabes to nation leading innovators — and yesterday’s landmark agreement between the City and US EPA reinforces the fact that there’s much more to come.

You also probably know we’ve been documenting the exciting efforts of the Philadelphia Water Department to change our cityscape into a vision of green. Besides the dozen short videos that can be found on our Green City, Clean Waters Vimeo channel, we’ve put together a 30 minute PBS special that encapsulates brings this game changing program to life.

We’re thrilled to announce it’ll be airing in a couple of weeks!

WHYY Airtimes

Download the flyer and pass it around.

Post it on your Facebook page, send it out on Twitter, Pin it, email it to friends.

And be sure to tune in and watch!

EcoExpress.org Event on 3/29 is Free and Fun!


ATTN Teachers, Educators, and Community Members:

EcoExpress.org Presents
Spring Into Science Education
Thursday, March 29, 2012, from 3 to 6pm
at the historic Laurel Hill Cemetery
(3822 Ridge Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19132-1840)

The 2nd Annual Spring into Science Education is a FREE networking event and celebration for local educators and community members. This event has a lot to offer!

Highlights of Spring into Science Education include:

  • The Premiere of the EcoExpress Documentary about the Overbrook Environmental Education Center
  • Exhibits by Local Environmental and Science Education Organizations
  • Hands-On Activity Demonstrations
  • Refreshments
  • Prizes
  • And more!

Getting to the Laurel Hill Cemetery is easy! Located just off of 76 in the East Falls neighborhood of Philadelphia, there is a free parking lot right on site for drivers. If you are taking public transportation, the 61 Bus runs from Center City to Laurel Hill. Or bike the Schuylkill River Trail directly to Laurel Hill.

Organizations participating in Spring into Science Education include Delaware Valley Green Building Council, Earth Force, Educational Advancement Alliance, Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center, iPRAXIS, Laurel Hill Cemetery, Marmota Environmental Consulting, Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, Philadelphia Science Festival, Project BioEyes, Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, Stroud Water Research Center with the Philadelphia Water Department, Take A Walk Books, and Weavers Way Community Programs.

While Spring into Science Education is a free event, attendance space is limited. Teachers, educators, and community members interested in attending are encouraged to register at EcoExpress.EventBrite.com.

Soak it Up, Philly!

Unless you’ve been pulling a Rip van Winkle lately, you’ve heard it before: As part of its long-term commitment to improving the health of the City’s waterways, the Philadelphia Water Department is focusing a great deal of attention on a “greening” approach.

What you may not realize is just how many PWD “green infrastructure” projects are popping up all over the city. Or how they are having a truly transformative effect on the ‘hoods where they’re being put into place.


The first of a series of public events unveiling some of the projects (see Soak it Up, Philly) was held March 1 in Fishtown where Water Commissioner Howard Neukrug, Deputy Mayor for Environmental and Community Resources and Commissioner of Philadelphia Parks and Recreation Mike DiBerardinis, New Kensington Community Development Corporation President Sandy Salzman, and other dignitaries were on hand to celebrate the completion of Philadelphia’s first stormwater-friendly GREEN STREET.

A green street restores some of our urban landscape’s natural function by capturing rain or snowmelt (stormwater runoff) and allowing it to soak into the soil instead of flowing directly into the City’s sewer system. This not only helps reduce pollution and prevents flooding, it brings a host of other benefits to a neighborhood, including beautification, cleaner air, and a renewed sense of community pride.

The Waterview Recreation Center in the East Falls neighborhood uses the same kind of stormwater tree trenches that were used in Fishtown. This video explains more about why rainwater runoff is a problem and how these “green tools” work:

Keeping Water On Site: Waterview Recreation Center from GreenTreks Network on Vimeo.

For everything you ever wanted to know about runoff and what’s being done about it, visit StormwaterPA.org.

For more videos about Philly’s exciting Green City, Clean Waters program, check out our Vimeo Channel.

And be sure to follow PWD’s Blog.

Philly Hosts another Green Conference: Cities Alive

Hot on the heels of the recent Low Impact Development Symposium at the Loews Hotel, Philly will host another flock of transformative thinkers the end of next month.

Cities Alive, the 9th annual Green Roof & Wall Conference, is coming to the City of Brotherly Love November 29-December 3, 2011.

This international event is co-hosted by Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, the City of Philadelphia Office of Sustainability, and the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society.

Why here, you ask? Check out the video from our friends at PHS for a few of the answers. All in all, we’d say this is just one more indication that Philadelphia is at the leading edge of the sustainability curve.


For More information visit Cities Alive.