Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl awarded a $100,000 check to the Pittsburgh Green Initiative Trust Fund, announced the formation of a Pittsburgh "Green Council," and created a position to head the two. The money is a result of money saved when the city purchased its energy in bulk. Executive Director of the Pittsburgh Green Building Alliance Rebecca Flora says that the green movement in Pittsburgh benefits the environment and the economy. She cites the creation of green jobs through green action in the city and how energy efficiency promotes cost efficiency in business. The Green Government Task Force has finished the "Pittsburgh Climate Action Plan" and will release that report next week. According to Ravenstahl, the Green Council will analyze the report and try to make its recommended changes. Flora says the group will focus on emissions. Both Flora and Ravenstahl like the idea of having created only one position for the Green Council so the city can utilize its resources in the non-profit and higher education sectors of the city. The $100,000 will also act as leverage to show the cities support for green improvements when applying for future grants.