Sustainability Updates Office of the Mayor (c) 2017 | City of Pittsburgh | All rights reserved Sustainability Updates for December <div> <img border="0" src="" /></div> <p> It&rsquo;s December, and as we reflect upon the year, we know that there is no way to sufficiently thank you for your continued hard work and dedication to make Pittsburgh a greener, more sustainable City &ndash; but we will try. &nbsp;</p> <p> Thank you to everyone who volunteered their Saturday mornings to help plant trees in Pittsburgh neighborhoods.&nbsp; Without your help, we would not have been able to plant <strong>3,622 trees </strong>this year.</p> <p> Thank you to the people who recycle at home, encourage others to recycle, and go the extra mile by toting blue bags to and from work to ensure that no unnecessary waste goes into our landfills.&nbsp; Without your help, we would not have been able to recycle over <strong>14,000 tons of material</strong> this year (a greater than 10% increase from 2009!).</p> <p> Thank you to everyone for just doing your part.&nbsp; We hope you have a warm and safe holiday season and we&rsquo;ll see you in the New Year!&nbsp; (Read on to learn about opportunities to be green this holiday season.)&nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>Be a Responsible Tailgater!&nbsp;<br /> </strong>This month, the Pennsylvania Resources Council and its campaign partners will launch a &ldquo;Let&rsquo;s Tackle Recycling&rdquo; campaign to collect materials in Heinz Field parking lots during the final two 2010 regular season Steelers home games. The effort will include distributing blue plastic bags to those entering designated parking lots and staffing a &ldquo;drop off&rdquo; station outside the stadium.&nbsp; For more information, visit <a href=""></a> or call 412-488-7490.</p> <p> <strong>Recycle Your Gift Wrap!<br /> </strong>Don&rsquo;t forget to recycle materials associated with holiday food and gifts &ndash; wrapping paper, cardboard boxes, and plastic containers can all be recycled curbside.&nbsp; Click <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>&nbsp;for more information.</p> <p> <strong>Compost Your Christmas Tree!<br /> </strong>Christmas trees will be accepted for composting at four drop-off locations this year.&nbsp; Trees in plastic bags will not be accepted.&nbsp; Please remove all ornaments, lights, and stands.&nbsp; Take your tree to one of the following City drop-off locations, January 3 to 29, 2011 Mon.-Sat., 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., to have it composted:</p> <ul> <li> 2nd Division P.W. (East End) &ndash; on North Dallas Ave at Hamilton Ave: 412-665-3609</li> <li> 3<sup>rd</sup> Division P.W. (Hazelwood) &ndash; on Melanchton Ave., off 5200 block of 2<sup>nd</sup> Ave: 412-422-6524</li> <li> 5<sup>th</sup> Division P.W. (West End) &ndash; at 1330 Hassler St., off of Hershel &amp; Steuben St: 412-937-3054</li> <li> Environmental Services Lot (Strip District) &ndash; at 3001 Railroad Street: 412-255-2773</li> </ul> <p> Christmas trees can also be placed on the curb for pick up on any regularly scheduled collection day. Please note: <strong>these trees will not be composted</strong>. &nbsp;Click <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>&nbsp;for more information, or call the Recycling Division at 412-255-2631.</p> Thu, 16 Dec 2010 15:55:29 -0500 Saving Energy This Winter <p> <strong><u>Save on Your Heating Bill by Weatherizing Your Home!</u></strong></p> <p> Colder temperatures and darker evenings don&rsquo;t have to mean higher energy bills this winter.&nbsp; Weatherizing your home is one of the easiest ways to help the environment AND save money.&nbsp;&nbsp; For tips on easy fixes and possible funding sources, consider the following:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>Take small steps: </strong>if you are a renter or don&rsquo;t want to spend a lot, consider these small actions recommended by <a href="">Conservation Consultants, Inc</a>: <ul> <li> <strong>Weather-stripping </strong>to seal leaks at the edges of windows or doors;</li> <li> <strong>Caulking </strong>to seal gaps that don&rsquo;t open and shut (e.g. where a fireplace or an air vent is built into the wall); and &nbsp;</li> <li> <strong>Insulating </strong>to keep the warm air in and the cool air out!</li> </ul> </li> <li> <strong>Home Improvement Loans: </strong>The Urban Redevelopment Authority offers low- and no-interest loans for home renovations and repairs, including energy efficiency improvements.&nbsp; For more information, please click <a href="">here</a>.</li> <li> <strong>Weatherization Assistance:</strong>&nbsp;Whether you are a renter or a home-owner, there are many weatherization and home improvement programs available for all income levels. ACTION-Housing provides a list of programs <a href="">here</a>.</li> </ul> <p> <strong><u><br /> Home Energy Scoring Pilot Program</u></strong></p> <p> You know how many miles per gallon your car gets, but do you know how many &ldquo;miles per gallon&rdquo; your home gets? A new Department of Energy program will introduce a user friendly home energy rating system in 10 locations across the US.&nbsp; Allegheny County, PA will be one of the 10 pilot sites to test this new program!&nbsp; Learn more <a href="">here</a>.</p> <p> <strong><u><br /> Composting Yard Waste</u></strong></p> <p> When raking leaves and picking up braches to get your yard ready for winter, remember that City residents can drop off yard waste for composting at the following Public Works locations:</p> <ul> <li> <strong>2nd Division PW </strong>- (West Homewood/ East Liberty) on Dallas Ave. at Hamilton Ave. Tel: 412-665-3609</li> <li> <strong>3rd Division PW </strong>- (Hazelwood) on Melanchton Ave., off 5200 block of 2nd Ave. Tel: 412-422-6524</li> <li> <strong>5th Division PW </strong>- (West End to Herschel Field) from Steuben St., turn right onto Hassler St., go past salt igloo Tel: 412-937-3054</li> </ul> <p> For more information, click <a href="">here</a>.</p> Thu, 18 Nov 2010 13:59:54 -0500 Sustainability Updates for October <p> <strong>In this month&rsquo;s update:</strong></p> <ul> <li> Pittsburgh wins milestone award for climate protection</li> <li> How to save $$ and use less electricity with rebates</li> <li> Learn about the Alcosan Wet Weather Control Plan</li> </ul> <p> <strong>Milestone Award</strong></p> <p> Pittsburgh is one of only three cities awarded an ICLEI Milestone 5 Award in late September! <a href="" target="_blank">The Five Milestone Process</a> measures a city&rsquo;s steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fight global warming.Only 16 cities have been awarded this milestone since the program started in 1993.</p> <p> Most recently, Pittsburgh completed the last milestone to &ldquo;monitor and verify results&rdquo; by releasing the Pittsburgh Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory. More information is available under &quot;Resources&quot; at <a href=""></a>.</p> <p> <a href="" target="_blank">ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability</a> (ICLEI) is a membership association of local governments committed to advancing climate protection and sustainable development.</p> <p> <strong>Rebates for energy savings!</strong></p> <p> <img align="right" src="" style="margin: 0px 0px 20px 10px" /></p> <p> Do you want to save money with more energy efficient appliances? Do you want to change your light bulbs to Compact Fluorescents (CFLs)? Did you know you can get rebates for these purchases through your electricity company?</p> <p> Watt Choices, a program of Duquesne Light, provides assistance to homeowners and businesses who want to reduce their energy use. There are rebates for energy efficient lighting, refrigerators, programmable thermostats, faucet aerators, and more. Rebates are available to recycle your old refrigerator, too! Check out the entire rebate catalog <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p> <strong>Did you know&hellip;</strong></p> <p> ...that as little as 1/10th inch of rain can cause sewer pipes to overflow, allowing untreated sewage to enter our rivers? ALCOSAN is holding community meetings all over Pittsburgh in October and November to update the public on the Wet Weather Control Plan to fix this problem. <a href="" target="_blank">Click here</a> to view the meeting schedule.</p> Thu, 21 Oct 2010 14:03:53 -0400 Announcing new website, energy efficient streetlight grant, and opportunity to get involved! <p> <strong>You can now visit us on the web!&nbsp; </strong></p> <p> Do you have questions on recycling, climate protection or urban greening?&nbsp; The Mayor&rsquo;s Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency now has its own website!&nbsp; Visit us at: <a href=""></a>. &nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>Funding Received for Energy Efficient Streetlights</strong></p> <p> The Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency recently received funding in the amount of $816,105 for more energy efficient streetlights!&nbsp; The grant came from Governor Edward G. Rendell through the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority, and will help the City of Pittsburgh:</p> <ul> <li> Replace streetlights in 30 neighborhood business districts (approx. 3,000 streetlights) with more energy efficient Light Emitting Diode models;</li> <li> Reduce carbon emissions by using less energy to operate; and</li> <li> Save taxpayers approximately $110,000 per year in energy and maintenance costs.</li> </ul> <p> This is the first of four phases to retrofit the City&rsquo;s 40,000 streetlights.&nbsp; The City hopes to begin work next summer.&nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>Get involved in community-driven action to stop global warming!</strong><br /> <br /> There will be a brainstorming session for citizens and community groups who want to get involved in reducing greenhouse gases in their neighborhoods on:</p> <p> <strong>Sunday, October 10, 2010</strong><strong><br /> <strong>1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. </strong></strong>(Refreshments and Check-in 1:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.)<br /> <strong><strong>Wilkins School Community Center, Regent Square </strong><br /> <strong>7604 Charleston Ave. in Pittsburgh&rsquo;s East End</strong></strong></p> <p> This event is being held by Citizens Climate Corps. To register or learn more, please visit <a href=""></a></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>For questions or comments, please contact:<br /> </strong>Sarah Palmisano<br /> Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency<br /> 412.255.2254<br /> <a href=""></a></p> Wed, 29 Sep 2010 15:21:47 -0400 Voice your opinion on open space! <p> <strong>What is Open Space? </strong></p> <p> The term &ldquo;open space&rdquo; refers to an area of land purposefully left undeveloped as a green area. Examples of open space include parks, greenways and community gardens.</p> <p> Open spaces are an important part of a sustainable city by providing numerous environmental and community benefits. For example, open spaces can:</p> <ul> <li> Reduce flooding and sewer overflow by absorbing large amounts of stormwater</li> <li> Provide wildlife habitat</li> <li> Help to maintain air quality</li> <li> Reduce urban heat islands</li> <li> Provide green space for neighborhood socializing and community building</li> </ul> <p> <strong><br /> We need your help!</strong></p> <p> The Department of City Planning, as part of the City&rsquo;s Comprehensive Plan (, is beginning the process of creating an Open Space, Parks and Recreation Plan and wants your opinion on parks, vacant land and recreation programs.</p> <p> To provide your input, please visit <a href=""></a>. There are two surveys available, one for adults, and one for youth. The deadline for participation is August 31, 2010.</p> <p> You can also register on the PLANPGH Exchange to be notified of any additional opportunities to give you opinions and public meetings or events for PLANPGH. Please note, City residency is not required to participate in the survey.</p> <p> For questions specifically regarding the <strong>Open Space, Parks, and Recreation Plan,</strong> please contact:</p> <p> Andrew Dash, AICP<br /> Senior Planner<br /> Department of City Planning<br /> 412.255.0760<br /> <a href=""></a></p> <p> &nbsp;<strong>Sustainability Contact:<br /> </strong>Sarah Palmisano<br /> Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency<br /> 412.255.2254<br /> <a href=""></a></p> Thu, 02 Sep 2010 14:18:10 -0400 Welcome to Sustainability Updates <p> Welcome to Sustainability Updates, a new e-mail alert from the Mayor&rsquo;s Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency at the City of Pittsburgh.</p> <p> We are excited to use these occasional updates to share news about the innovative initiatives we are working on, as well as to update you on existing &ldquo;green&rdquo; projects in the <a href="">City of Pittsburgh</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>The Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency<br /> </strong>In October 2008, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl hired the City&rsquo;s first-ever Sustainability Coordinator and created the Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency to provide guidance on greening the City&rsquo;s operations and facilities.</p> <p> The Sustainability Coordinator is tasked with implementing the municipal recommendations of the <a href="">Pittsburgh Climate Action Plan</a>, adopted in August 2008, as well as collaborating with individuals from all departments to strengthen existing environmental initiatives and ensure that sustainability is integrated into all City operations.</p> <p> Staffed by the Sustainability Coordinator and Energy and Utilities Manager, the Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency also serves as a work and learning space for students and young adults&nbsp; who work with the City through class projects, independent studies, internships and fellowships.</p> <p> <strong>Did you know that the City of Pittsburgh&hellip;</strong></p> <ul> <li> Recently created a <a href="">Green Guide</a>&nbsp;to aid citizens in &ldquo;going green&rdquo; in Pittsburgh?</li> <li> Gave away 2,000 tree seedlings to residents in April 2010?</li> <li> Was recently recognized with &lsquo;Bicycle Friendly&rsquo; status by the League of American Bicyclists?</li> <li> Replaced all of its traffic signals with energy efficient LED models in 2008, saving nearly $20,000 per month?</li> <li> Purchases 15% of its electricity from renewable wind sources?</li> <li> Is one of only 25 U.S. cities to be awarded a Solar America Cities grant through the Department of Energy?</li> <li> Has transformed over 120 vacant lots around the city into common green spaces through the Green Up program?</li> <li> Uses a B20 biodiesel blend in all of its diesel equipment?</li> <li> Collected over 13,200 tons of recyclables curbside in 2009, which is a 19.5% Increase from 2008?</li> </ul> <p> We look forward to using the Sustainability Update as a tool to keep you informed on what the City is doing and how you can be involved.&nbsp;&nbsp;<br /> &nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>Contact:<br /> </strong>Office of Sustainability and Energy Efficiency<br /> Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl<br /> 637 City County-Building<br /> 414 Grant Street<br /> Pittsburgh, PA 15219<br /> Phone: 412-255-2254<br /> <a href=""></a></p> Fri, 18 Jun 2010 13:07:46 -0400