Philadelphia, June 21, 2013 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter and the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability released the Greenworks Philadelphia 2013 Progress Report, which outlines work toward the plan’s goal for Philadelphia to be the greenest city in America by 2015. Greenworks, released in 2009, outlines 15 measureable targets and 166 initiatives in five topic areas: energy, environment, equity, economy, and engagement. Through the hard work and dedication of many City leaders and agencies, work on 95% of the 166 initiatives is either complete or underway. This year’s progress report highlights trends on Greenworks implementation for many of the plan’s measurable targets.
“I want to thank the many City agencies and community partners who have worked tirelessly towards our Greenworks goal to make Philadelphia America’s greenest city,” said Mayor Nutter. “Together we have positioned Philadelphia as a leader in urban sustainability. We are seeing positive results from our work already, and this is also a smart long-term strategy for improving the city’s competitiveness and resiliency.”
Four years into the six-year implementation timeline, two-thirds of the targets show trends toward meeting established goals. Philadelphia is exceeding expectations on some targets, such as reducing the amount that residents drive vehicles. Target 12 is to reduce vehicle miles traveled by 10 percent to 5.36 billion by 2015. According to the most recent data, in 2011 there were 5.34 billion vehicle miles traveled in Philadelphia. There has been more than a 10 percent reduction in the vehicle miles traveled since Greenworks launched in 2008.
Data on Target 4, to purchase or generate 20 percent of electricity used in Philadelphia from alternative energy sources, shows an increase in alternative energy use for the fourth straight year and a sixfold increase since 2008.
Other highlights of current progress include:
- A reduction of municipal energy use by 7 percent;
- Alternative energy use increase from 2.5 to 14 percent;
- Nearly 90,000 trees planted since 2008;
- City Council passage of energy benchmarking and disclosure legislation; and
- 11.6 new miles of trails completed since 2011.
“We are thankful for such strong support from our partners, both in City government and throughout Philadelphia, and we are proud to have one of the most robust sustainability-based reporting processes of any city in the country,” said Katherine Gajewski, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability. “In just four years, Greenworks has proven that we can make impressive and measurable progress on goals across a number of areas. Through regular reporting, we continue to gain insight that helps us to better understand trends as well as to identify challenges and opportunities. Sharing data and lessons learned during implementation has opened our process up to allow for a valuable exchange of information and ideas.”
The full Greenworks Philadelphia 2013 Progress Report can be found at http://www.phila.gov/green.