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News Briefs:

Green Power for a Green LA

Center for Livable Communities Seeks Nominations for Ahwahnee Awards

Feds To Walk The Talk

Rail~Volution ‘99

Mainstreaming Green: Sustainable Design for Buildings and Communities

Energy Efficient Community of the Future Breaks Ground

Transit Use Climbs Again

Specialty Electric Vehicle Conference

Lean, Clean, Mass Transit Machine

Growth Projected For Landscape Architects

Smart Growth: From Rhetoric to Reality

1999 Northeast Regional Workshop on Education for Sustainability

Fourth Biomass Conference of the Americas

Energy '99

National Building Museum Hosts Smart Growth Exhibit

Clinton-Gore Livability Agenda

 

Spring 1999

The News Briefs section of EcoIQ Magazine is underwritten by Gryphon Communications. To find out more about Gryphon Communications...


Green Power for a Green LA

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (DWP) has launched the "Green Power for a Green LA" program, which offers customers the opportunity to purchase clean energy from renewable sources, such as the sun, wind and water.

More than 70 percent of Los Angeles' electricity is generated from coal and nuclear power. Green Power allows Los Angeles DWP customers to choose clean, renewable energy sources that use solar panels and wind and hydro technologies to create electricity—or "Green Power."

"Known for setting trends, all Angelenos have an opportunity to demonstrate to the country the wide-ranging benefits of Green Power," said U.S. Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson, who joined Mayor Richard Riordan, Councilmember Ruth Galanter, DWP General Manager S. David Freeman and others in introducing the new program to Angelenos. "I applaud the partnership that is giving consumers a clean energy choice."

Besides offering cleaner air, Green Power will create new jobs, improve system reliability and lower electricity bills. The program will create jobs by attracting manufacturers of solar power, wind turbines and other clean air technologies to Los Angeles. DWP plans to locate the new renewable energy sources in the Los Angeles area, providing needed jobs.

Initially, Green Power customers will pay a small premium to cover the cost of developing new renewable energy sources – approximately $3 a month for the average residential customer. In return, DWP will provide a menu of energy efficiency measures to help customers reduce monthly consumption of electricity, and thus reduce their bills and offset the increased cost of Green Power.

For instance, each Green Power customer will receive two energy-efficient light bulbs upon enrollment that alone can save customers about $30 per year.

To sign up and for more information on DWP's Green Power program, customers should call 1-800-GreenLA, or visit DWP's Green Power website at http://www.GreenLA.com.

The DWP serves more than 3.6 million people in Los Angeles and was established almost 100 years ago to provide the water and electric services to Los Angeles residents and businesses.


Center for Livable Communities Seeks Nominations for Ahwahnee Awards

The 1999 Ahwahnee Awards will be presented by the Local Government Commission's Center for Livable Communities, The American Institute of Architects, California Council and The California Chapter of the American Planning Association. The awards will recognize exemplary projects that promote more livable, pedestrian-oriented and transit-based communities in one of the 14 western U.S. states. Requests for the entry materials form are due by July 23, and submittal binders are due by August 27, 1999.

For more information on eligibility and submittal, visit http://www.lgc.org/clc/ahwahnee/awards.html.


Feds To Walk The Talk

Federal government agencies will now be required to increase conservation efforts in order to achieve a 35 percent reduction in energy use by 2010, compared with 1985 levels. According to the terms of an executive order on "Greening the Government" issued by the White House in June, agencies also will have to show that they're on a path to cut greenhouse gas emissions to 30 percent below 1990 levels by 2010. This marks the first time that the government has set a specific greenhouse gas reduction target.

"If the federal
government can
make this work, anybody can."

- David M. Nemtzow
Alliance to Save Energy
.

"President Clinton has finally plugged some huge energy leaks while making a historic climate change commitment for the largest energy user in the world – the federal government," said Alliance to Save Energy President David M. Nemtzow.

"The real test is in the coming year as Cabinet secretaries implement the President’s plan ... (W)ill they come through with adequate plans and budgets and will Congress and the agencies follow the President’s lead?" asked Nemtzow.

"This is a major step forward in our efforts to address climate change," he said. "After all, if the federal government can make this work, anybody can."


Rail~Volution ‘99

Rail~Volution, to be held September 25-28 in Dallas, will bring together a unique cross section of citizen activists, business leaders, planners, academics, local elected officials, transit operators and federal officials. This year's event, entitled "Livable Communities: A Renewed American Dream," will explore local initiatives to create livable communities. For more details, visit http://www.tri-met.org/railvol/index.htm.


Mainstreaming Green: Sustainable Design for Buildings and Communities

This event, to be held October 14-17 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, will be a collaboration between The American Institute of Architects and the U.S. Green Building Council. It will highlight how green design is entering the mainstream of construction and development. There will be a special focus on performance and standards. For more information, contact Christopher Gribbs at AIA, 1735 New York Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20006-5292. Phone 202-636-7515 or e-mail gribbsc@aiamail.aia.org.


Energy Efficient Community of the Future Breaks Ground

Construction has just begun on the Summerset Housing Project in Western Pennsylvania, one of five national pilot communities in the federal government's Partnership in Advancing Technologies in Housing (PATH), an initiative announced by President Clinton last year. PATH is a public/private partnership in which home building industry leaders join forces with federal agencies to speed the innovation and application of advanced housing technologies.

"The PATH program is helping transform the face of American communities," said Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson. "By working with the private sector, we're achieving real success in our efforts to lower consumer energy costs and protect the environment by increasing energy efficiency."

The project will build the highly energy efficient homes by incorporating the latest energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies without comprising comfort, quality, or durability. The homes will be built to meet guidelines for energy consumption, efficient use of water and lumber, and the use of recycled products. The result will be homes that offer superior energy performance with lower operating expenses at no additional cost.

Summerset is being built on a former waste site for the steel-making industry, and it will include 336 single-family homes, 121 townhouses and 256 apartments. Fifty-seven percent of the 244 acre site will be open space, including new neighborhood parks and playgrounds.


Transit Use Climbs Again

Use of the nation's public transit systems continues to grow, with 8.7 billion trips taken in 1998, a 4.6 percent increase over 1997, according to the American Public Transit Association. In the last three years, ridership is up over 12 percent.

"More than one thousand new trips on public transportation were added each day in 1998 – a total of 400 million trips. High quality services and the strong economy have spurred more and more Americans to get on board public transportation," said William W. Millar, President of the American Public Transit Association. "More people riding public transportation means less congestion and a better quality of life for all Americans."

Transit ridership increases in 1998 were led by bus systems serving populations less than 50,000 -- up 7.4%. Bus systems serving areas with over 2 million population were up 5%. Rail ridership showed strong growth with light rail up 6.3%. Heavy rail ridership was up 5.5% while commuter rail showed an increase of 5.4%.


Specialty Electric Vehicle Conference

Non-road vehicles are used in all kinds of ways -- materials handling, intra-neighborhood movement, large facility site transport, sweeping and scrubbing, airport ground support, etc. "The Changing World of Industrial & Specialty Electric Vehicles," to be held August 18-20 in Orlando, Florida, will inform suppliers, customers and others of new capabilities and applications for these vehicles.

Sponsored by EPRI, the collaborative science and technology development organization for the power industry, the conference features technical sessions on topics ranging from fast charging of lift trucks and battery lifecycle testing to commercial and industrial market opportunities for sweepers and scrubbers, and improved technologies in airport ground support equipment.

For additional Information, contact Michele Samoulides of EPRI at 650-855-2127, e-mail msamouli@epri.com.


Lean, Clean, Mass Transit Machine

A 40-foot hybrid-electric transit bus powered by a Solectria drive system has been unveiled by the manufacturer of the bus, New Flyer Industries. The new hybrid bus has been purchased by the Orange County California Transportation Authority (OCTA).

"New Flyer has created a clean transit bus that is perfect for use where long-range, low-emission service is desired," stated Solectria CEO James Worden.

The New Flyer hybrid bus is the latest transit vehicle to emerge from a series of on-going ventures between Solectria and several leading bus manufacturers to produce all-electric, hybrid-electric diesel, and hybrid-electric compressed natural gas bus propulsion systems.


Growth Projected For Landscape Architects

Employment at U.S. landscape architecture firms will increase over 21% through the year 2006 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor’s 1998-99 Occupation Outlook Handbook. Last fall, landscape architecture was named a runner-up hot track profession by U. S. News & World Report.

"It’s exciting to see hard statistics validating what we’re hearing anecdotally all the time - our members just can’t hire enough new staff to keep up with the demand. There’s been a tremendous explosion in both the appreciation and need for landscape architecture services," said Peter Kirsch, executive vice president of the American Society of Landscape Architects.

Additional information, including a job bank and full list of accredited U.S. programs, is available on ASLA Online. The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook is online at http://stats.bls.gov/oco/ocos039.htm.


Smart Growth: From Rhetoric to Reality

This two day seminar (July 23-24) will be held in Portland, where smart growth efforts have been underway for a quarter of a century. Issues to be covered will include Urban Growth Boundaries, Transforming Transportation Policy, Protecting Farm and Forest Lands, Open Spaces and Natural Resources, Alternative Growth Scenarios and Regional Planning, and The Politics of Smart Growth: Reaching New Constituencies and Finding New Allies. For more detailed information, visit http://www.friends.org/smartgrwth.html.


1999 Northeast Regional Workshop on Education for Sustainability

Primarily for professionals working in higher education, this November 5-7 workshop in Cornwall, Connecticut will focus on innovative tools, techniques and resources to help develop and implement sustainability activities and education on campus. For more information, click here.


Fourth Biomass Conference of the Americas

This conference, entitled "Biomass: A Growth Opportunity in Green Energy and Value-Added Products," will be held in Oakland, California from August 29 through September 2. Its major themes address today's issues and challenges for biomass and bioenergy. For more information, visit http://www.nrel.gov/bioam.


Energy '99

A workshop and exposition to be held in Orlando, Florida from August 23-25, it is aimed at those responsible for planning, coordinating, and implementing energy efficiency, renewable energy, or water efficiency programs. The event will deal with the cross-functional information needs, skills, and requirements of energy management professionals. For more details, visit http://www.energy99.ee.doe.gov.


National Building Museum Hosts Smart Growth Exhibit

"Where Do We Go From Here? Smart Growth and Choices for Change" is the first of a four-part exhibition series on smart growth. It provides an overview of the causes of sprawl and the ways in which smart growth principles can accommodate development while preserving community character, protecting the environment, and encouraging stable local economies. For more information, visit http://www.nbm.org/Exhibits/Future_Exhibits.html.


Clinton-Gore Livability Agenda

To help communities across America grow in ways that ensure a high quality of life and strong, sustainable economic growth, President Clinton and Vice President Gore are proposing a comprehensive Livability Agenda providing new tools and resources for state and local governments. For more details, visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/WH/SOTU99/lcom.html.


The News Briefs section of EcoIQ Magazine is underwritten by Gryphon Communications. To find out more about Gryphon Communications...



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