Mayor Nutter Releases Greenworks Philadelphia Progress Report and Plans for 2011

Significant achievements made in first year of plan to make Philadelphia the greenest city in America

PHILADELPHIA, May 26, 2010 – Today Mayor Michael A. Nutter released the Greenworks Philadelphia 2010 Progress Report detailing the many significant sustainability achievements made by the City of Philadelphia in the first year of Greenworks Philadelphia. Since last year when Mayor Nutter outlined a plan to make Philadelphia America’s number one green city great progress has been made toward achieving the goals laid out in the plan, progress recognized at the national level.

“The amazing achievements of Greenworks Philadelphia in just its first year show what can happen when you set an ambitious goal and involve government, business, non-profits and citizens in achieving it,” said Mayor Nutter. “By combining the strengths of each and providing opportunities for collaboration, Philadelphia has become a national model for how cities can aggressively pursue a green and sustainable future.”

Among the accomplishments of the first year of Greenworks are:

Arrival of 260 new diesel-electric hybrid buses for SEPTA
Creation of bike lanes on Spruce and Pine streets in Center City
Creation of over 500 green jobs through the Philadelphia Workforce Investment Board and the expansion of green job training programs
Establishment of the citywide Recycling Rewards program to further increase the recycling rate in Philadelphia, which has tripled since 2008
Installation of 470 Big Belly trash compactors and 210 on-street recycling units
Creation of a loan fund to help businesses finance energy-efficient renovations and construction

Weatherization of over 550 homes saving low-income homeowners money on their energy bills, with a further 600 homes scheduled to be retrofitted
Legislation requiring the use of “cool roofs” on new commercial and residential buildings and LEED Silver certification for City government building and renovation projects
A citywide ‘Coolest Block’ contest from which each resident on the 1200 Block of Wolf Street in South Philadelphia will receive a cool roof and insulation upgrades
Promotion of the largest municipal car sharing program in the country with over 440 City employees enrolled
Philadelphia Water Department submitted Green City, Clean Waters, to the EPA. PWD’s plan has been recognized as the leading sustainable stormwater management plan in the country
Increased the number of green roofs to tie for 3rd in the country in total square footage of green roofs

The City of Philadelphia has already attracted significant national attention for its sustainability efforts, winning the U.S. Chamber of Commerce 2010 Sustainable Community Award and being awarded a competitive $25 million Recovery Act Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant, one of only 25 recipients across the country to receive such funding. Additional Recovery Act funds from the U.S. Department of Energy will allow the city to replace 85,000 traffic signals with LED lights, expand a loan fund for owners of commercial and industrial properties to make energy-efficient improvements, and develop a 250-kilowatt solar project at the Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant.

Greenworks Philadelphia includes achievements from across city government as well as City Council, the private sector, non-profit organizations and community groups throughout the city. Implementation of Greenworks is coordinated by the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability.

“Putting the systems in place to successfully implement Greenworks over the course of the plan has been a critical accomplishment in this first year,” said Katherine Gajewski, Director of Sustainability. “We have developed communications networks within city government and with our external partners to effectively convey information and track progress, which this first annual report reflects. We will take this to the next level in Year Two with the launch of the Greenworks Database, which will provide us with an innovative project management tool to track and report our progress.”

The progress report was unveiled at a community event at 9th and Norris in Eastern North Philadelphia organized by the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability and Asociación Puertorriqueños en Marcha (APM), an agency dedicated to the betterment of the Eastern North Philadelphia community. The residents of this neighborhood have benefited from energy-saving, weatherized homes, new transit-oriented development, and stormwater management systems. At the event participants took walking tours of the neighborhood to explore the many sustainable improvements made by the community and to highlight what integrated sustainability planning can look like. Food was provided by local vendors and the festive atmosphere was completed with community musicians providing the entertainment.

Greenworks Philadelphia sets goals in five areas—energy, environment, equity, economy and engagement—and its work encompasses more than 150 initiatives. The initiatives are intended to reduce the city’s vulnerability to rising energy prices, to limit its environmental footprint, and to reposition its workforce to build upon Philadelphia’s competitive advantages in the emerging green economy.

The full report as well as the Annual Progress Report and additional video and audio content can be found at http://www.greenworksphila.org. Further information can also be found on the new, revamped Mayor’s Office of Sustainability website at http://www.phila.gov/green.

Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Kicks Off in Center City and South Philadelphia

Philadelphia, May 15, 2010 – Today Mayor Michael A. Nutter officially marked the launch of Philadelphia Recycling Rewards in Center City and South Philadelphia. Philadelphia Recycling Rewards – a partnership between the City of Philadelphia, the Streets Department and RecycleBank – allows residents with City-provided recycling collection to earn points for the amount they recycle. The kick-off event also featured a rally to support UnLitter Us, a sustained initiative and movement by the City of Philadelphia Streets Department to rid Philadelphia of litter and create clean, beautiful and safe blocks.

“Today marks the fourth rollout of the Philadelphia Recycling Rewards program and a great way for Center City and South Philadelphia residents to earn valuable rewards and experience savings for doing the right thing – recycling,” said Mayor Nutter. “It’s a quadruple win for the local community and businesses, the City and the environment. I encourage all residents to join in our recycling effort and to help make Philadelphia a more sustainable city.”

Residents in Philadelphia can potentially earn hundreds of dollars of rewards each year. Points are redeemable through RecycleBank for groceries, gift cards, merchandise and entertainment at hundreds of participating local and national merchants. Local participating businesses include ACME, select Shop Rite locations, Rite Aid, CVS/pharmacy, Rita’s Water Ice, Las Cazuelas, Reading Terminal Market, Le Virtu, Black & Brew, JuJu Salon and Organics, SWEAT Fitness, and more. Residents can also redeem points at hundreds of major retailers and national brands such as Nature Made, Verizon, Seventh Generation, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Ruby Tuesday, and Bed, Bath & Beyond.

Philadelphia Recycling Rewards is anticipated to bring the City’s recycling diversion rate – the amount of recyclable materials that are diverted away from landfills—to record levels. Every ton of waste diverted from landfills currently saves the city about $70. The program is a “pay for performance” contract and shares the savings for additional tons of recycling collected above and beyond current levels. This means RecycleBank only gets paid when the city increases recycling and reduces trash.

“As we continue to roll out service across Philadelphia, we continue to witness how the local business community, households and the city come together to work towards attaining Philadelphia’s environmental goals,” said Scott Lamb, RecycleBank Chief Operations Officer. “We are proud to be back providing our valuable rewards program in the first city to pilot our program back in 2005.”

RecycleBank and Verizon have teamed up to make recycling in the Philadelphia tri-state area even more rewarding. Starting today, as part of their sponsorship of the RecycleBank program, Verizon will offer the first 10,000 people to sign up for RecycleBank 50 bonus points. Additionally, the first 500 RecycleBank members to activate a new two-year line of Verizon service will receive double curbside RecycleBank Points for 24 months.

“This initiative is yet another way we are continuing our strong track record of fostering sustainability both inside our business and in the communities we serve,” said Mario Turco, president of Verizon Wireless’ Philadelphia Tri-State Region. “I applaud Mayor Nutter’s vision to make Philadelphia the nation’s greenest city by 2015 and I’m convinced that innovative programs like Philadelphia’s Recycling Rewards effort, powered by RecycleBank, will be critical to helping speed the Mayor’s vision along the road to reality.”

The mayor has set ambitious goals with Greenworks Philadelphia, which has recycling goals including a 20 percent diversion rate by 2011 and 25 percent by 2015. Philadelphia Recycling Rewards powered by RecycleBank will help the City achieve and hopefully exceed those goals.

The Philadelphia Recycling Rewards roll-out schedule is as follows:
February 2010: North Philadelphia
March 2010: Lower Northeast, Frankford and Logan Sections
April 2010: West and Southwest Philadelphia
May 2010: Center City and South Philadelphia
June 2010: Northeast Philadelphia
July 2010: Northwest Philadelphia

For more information about Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Program, and to sign-up for a rewards account, please visit http://www.PhillyRecyclingPAYS.com or call the Philadelphia Recycling Rewards Customer Affairs Unit at 1-888-769-7960.

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About RecycleBank
RecycleBank® motivates people to recycle and rewards consumers for taking greener actions with points that can be redeemed from participating local and national business partners. Through collaboration and innovation, RecycleBank is helping to create a culture that encourages people to take simple steps towards greener lifestyles. With new products and services like residential recycling, product reuse, expanded e-waste recycling, responsible disposal or simply focusing on using what already exists in the world today, we believe that making greener choices shouldn’t feel at all like a trade off. It should be a trade up, and so RecycleBank rewards you every step of the way. RecycleBank currently provides service to over one million people across the U.S. and the U.K. and has been recognized with a number of business and environmental awards, including being named as a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum and as a Champion of the Earth by the United Nations Environmental Programme. RecycleBank is headquartered in New York City. For more information, visit http://www.RecycleBank.com.

About UnLitter Us Litter Rallies
The Philadelphia Streets Department along with the Philadelphia More Beautiful Committee (PMBC) are holding Litter Rallies throughout the city, bringing neighbors out in force to join the UnLitter Us movement and take action to keep their neighborhoods clean. UnLitter Us is a sustained initiative and movement to rid Philadelphia of litter and create clean, beautiful and safe blocks. The Litter Rallies feature live music, free giveaways, “UnLitter Us” educational information, games and crafts for kids, and more.

Greenworks Philadelphia wins National Honor

By Diane Mastrull INQUIRER STAFF WRITER

A year ago, Philadelphia launched a sustainability plan aimed not only at improving environmental stewardship and energy efficiency, but also at converting the old industrial city into a clean-technology hub. The ambitious initiative known as Greenworks Philadelphia picked up what city officials are considering a substantial credibility boost Thursday night. Philadelphia was named winner of the third annual Siemens Sustainable Community Award in the large-community category. The plan edged out sustainability efforts by a more modern city – Dallas – in a national contest organized by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The other finalist was Atlanta. Grand Rapids, Mich., and Newton, Iowa, took the top prize for midsize and small communities, respectively. Green initiatives are more commonly thought of as a West Coast passion, said Katherine Gajewski, director of Philadelphia’s Office of Sustainability. “I would really like Philadelphia to start to redefine this green thing a little bit,” she said. “It’s not about just making new stuff and building stuff; it’s also about investing in your existing assets.” The award was presented by the chamber’s Business Civic Leadership Center and Siemens Corp., an electronics and electrical-engineering company, in Houston during the National Conference on Corporate Community Investment. As winner in the large-community category, Philadelphia becomes host city next year for the conference, attended by 300 representatives of some of the largest U.S. corporations. “I’m hoping Mayor Nutter will show people how Philadelphia has changed and is embracing change,” said Stephen Jordan, executive director of the Business Civic Leadership Center, the corporate citizenship affiliate of the U.S. Chamber. The award is intended to highlight successful public-private partnerships and showcase national models for sustainable development. Jordan said Greenworks seemed to “have been designed with award criteria in mind” in that it calls for participation from a range of companies as well as neighborhoods, and demonstrates “real concern with balancing the environmental interest with economic and social interest.” The judges also were impressed by Greenworks’ 15 measurable targets and more than 150 specific steps identified to reach them by 2015, Jordan said. It is a program that considers sustainability through five lenses: energy, environment, equity, economy, and engagement. Goals include: lowering city government energy consumption 30 percent; diverting 70 percent of solid waste from landfills; and providing park and recreation resources within 10 minutes of 75 percent of residents. Nutter will release a report on progress toward each goal May 26, Gajewski said. On Thursday, she identified a few achievements, including the city’s having secured $14.1 million in stimulus funds from the U.S. Department of Energy in September to help finance, among other things, replacement of 85,000 traffic signals with LED (light-emitting diodes) lights, establishment of a loan fund for owners of commercial and industrial properties to make energy-efficient improvements, and development of a 250-kilowatt solar project at the Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant. Last month, the city also was awarded a $25 million grant from the U.S. Energy Department to fund residential and commercial building retrofits in Philadelphia, as well as in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery Counties. Now, an economic recovery is needed so that family-supporting green jobs can be created, Gajewski said. “Can we make Philadelphia the clean-tech hub in the Northeast?” she asked. “If we work hard enough, we think there’s a real opportunity.” Read more: http://www.philly.com/inquirer/breaking/business_breaking/20100513_Greenworks_Philadelphia_wins_national_honor.html#ixzz0oz57FkSB Play fantasy sports and win cash prizes instantly. Philly.com’s Instant Fantasy Sports Games

Mayor Nutter Announces Winner of RetroFIT PHilly “Coolest Block” Contest, Signs Cool Roof Legislation into Law

PHILADELPHIA, May 13, 2010 – At a press conference today overlooking City Hall from the white roof of 1515 Market Street, Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced the winner of the RetroFIT Philly “Coolest BlocK” contest and signed new “Cool Roof” legislation into law. Each home on the winning block will receive an energy audit, installation of a ‘cool roof’ coating, insulation and air sealing upgrades.

The winner of the contest, a partnership between the City of Philadelphia, the Dow Chemical Company, and the Energy Coordinating Agency of Philadelphia (ECA), is the 1200 block of Wolf Street. Mayor Nutter personally called Block Coordinator, Ms. Theresa Jack, earlier this week to deliver the news. A block party will be held on the 1200 block of Wolf Street on Saturday, June 19th to celebrate the RetroFIT Philly winners, and to kick-off the cool roof installations and energy efficiency upgrades for the whole block.

“I would like to congratulate 1200 Wolf Street and thank all the neighbors who came together to participate in the ‘Coolest Block’ contest,” said Mayor Nutter. “Many of the row homes that give our city its unique character were built long before today’s energy-conscious environment. This contest and today’s legislation will help Philadelphia become a city of the future and set an example for others throughout the country.”

Seventy-four blocks from across the city, with a total of more than 1,600 homes, submitted entries for the contest, which were reviewed by a panel of judges including representatives from local media, environmental organizations, and the building industry. The contest encouraged residents from Philadelphia’s many row home neighborhoods to compete to win an energy efficiency upgrade for their entire block, including an energy-saving “cool roof,” air sealing and insulation. The Dow Chemical Company contributed products and technologies, and The Dow Chemical Company Foundation provided financial support for the contest.

“We feel this effort can be a blueprint for bringing communities together in the interest of saving energy and improving quality of life,” says Liz Robinson, Executive Director, ECA. “This contest is just one of many ways we hope to educate all Philadelphia residents about how to reduce their heating and cooling bills, make their homes more comfortable and preserve the historic blocks that make our city unique.”

“Our company is committed to using science to increase the energy efficiency of homes and other structures”, said Jerome Peribere, President and CEO of Philadelphia-based Dow Advanced Materials.

“Helping to bring communities together to make a positive change for their city and environment is one of the ways we can fulfill that commitment.”

At the press conference Mayor Nutter also signed a new law, sponsored by Councilman Jim Kenney and passed unanimously by City Council, which requires all new commercial and residential construction to include reflective roofs, a feature that will reduce cooling costs and energy usage in the city. Unlike traditional black roofs, reflective cool roofs reflect the sun’s rays back into the atmosphere and release absorbed heat. This keeps buildings cooler and lessens the demand for air conditioning by 10 to 30 percent. On new construction, reflective roofs are comparable in price to traditional roofing materials but average energy savings of 20 percent.

“This legislation is a simple step to reduce energy consumption and is virtually cost-neutral for new construction,” Kenney said. “Reflective roofs offer both environmental and financial advantages over traditional roofs and by requiring them, I hope to spur a new wave of more energy efficient building practices amongst our city’s construction projects.”

“Councilman Kenney has once again demonstrated tremendous leadership on the issue of sustainability which is crucial to the future of our city,” said Mayor Nutter. “I want to thank him and his colleagues in City Council for serving as full partners in our efforts to save money, cut down our energy usage, and become the number one green city in the United States.”

The Cool Roof law and the Coolest Block Contest both support initiatives described in Greenworks Philadelphia, the city’s comprehensive sustainability plan. Developed by the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability to make Philadelphia the “Greenest City in America,” Greenworks includes goals to reduce citywide energy consumption by 10% and to retrofit 15% of the city’s housing stock by 2015. The Mayor’s Office of Sustainability worked closely with Councilman Kenney’s office in developing the Cool Roof legislation and to create the Retrofit Philly Contest.

For more information on the RetroFIT Philly contest visit http://www.retrofitphilly.com. For more information on Greenworks Philadelphia visit http://www.greenworksphila.org.

About Energy Coordinating Agency of Philadelphia
The Energy Coordinating Agency (ECA) is a non-profit corporation, founded in 1984, whose mission is to help people conserve energy and to promote a sustainable and socially equitable energy future for all in the Philadelphia region. Our services to low income people are at the heart of our mission and are provided in collaboration with our citywide network of 14 Neighborhood Energy Centers. In the past year, ECA provided over 40,000 low income families 86,218 energy services, valued at more than $27 million, leveraging our budget of $8.4 million more than 3 times on their behalf. These services include: budget and energy counseling; bill payment assistance; energy conservation treatments, and energy education. Our conservation services saved these families an average of 20% of their energy costs, enabling them to meet their expenses and stay in their homes.
About Greenworks Philadelphia
Mayor Michael Nutter created the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability (MOS) to help the city leverage its existing assets and mitigate its exposure to the effects of global warming. This means changing the way that government does business. It also means giving citizens the tools they need to lower their own carbon emissions and reduce their vulnerability to increasing energy costs. Sustainability is a core mission for the Nutter Administration and the work of MOS, primarily through the implementation of Greenworks Philadelphia, will help decrease the city’s vulnerability to energy prices and climate change, increase our capacity to compete in global markets for new jobs and new businesses, and ensure that all residents share in the city’s prosperous future.
About The Dow Chemical Company
Dow combines the power of science and technology with the “Human Element” to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, renewable energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries and in high growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings and agriculture. In 2009, Dow had annual sales of $45 billion and employed approximately 52,000 people worldwide. The Company’s more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 214 sites in 37 countries across the globe. References to “Dow” or the “Company” mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted. More information about Dow can be found at http://www.dow.com.
About Dow Building & Construction
A business group within Dow’s Advanced Material Division, Building & Construction is comprised of two business units – Dow Building Solutions and Dow Construction Chemicals – each of which offer strengths in channel management, branding, technology development / support and demand creation. The two business units collectively employ about 1,700 people worldwide, and generate almost $2 billion of revenue while operating more than 30 plants worldwide. Through its strong sales support, customer service and building science expertise, Dow’s Building & Construction business units provide meaningful solutions for customers today, while also addressing the industry’s emerging needs and demands with advanced industry knowledge.

More information about RetroFIT PHILLY is available at http://www.retrofitphilly.com. For further information, please contact Lindsay Lathrop, Marketing Communications Manager, The Dow Chemical Company, at (215) 592.2184, llathrop@dow.com; or Marissa Peterson of Gibbs & Soell Public Relations, at (212) 697-2600, mpeterson@gibbs-soell.com

City Launches UnLitter Us Campaign

The Philadelphia Streets Department has announced UnLitter Us, the first sustained public service campaign to rid our City of litter once and for all. We won’t put up with litter any more. Philadelphia deserves better, and the Streets Department stands firm in its commitment to attack litter on every front.

View videos on the UnLitter Us Philly YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/user/UnLitterUsPhilly.