Environmental

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  1. Making Hazard Mitigation a Local Planning Priority

    Through good urban planning, communities determine with logic and order how land is developed, how transportation systems work, and how water flows into and out of homes. At the same time, local governments work hard to be equitable, attractive, efficient and sustainable.But what happens when things don't go as planned; when natural or man-made disasters unexpectedly bring chaos, confusion and tragedy?
  2. Racial Equity is Key to Cleveland’s Comeback

    On June 22, 2019, the city of Cleveland will host what organizers hope will be the largest clean water rally in the nation, in observance of the 50th anniversary of one of the most infamous and influential disasters in the city’s history – an event that ultimately resulted in the establishment of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the federal Clean Water Act.It was on that date in 1969 that the Cuyahoga River caught fire… again.
  3. Report: Forest Soils are Absorbing Less Methane

    Farming, energy production, and landfills produce methane, a potent greenhouse gas. Forests can remove methane from the atmosphere through the activity of soil bacteria.But increasing precipitation – a symptom of climate change – is making it harder for forest soils to trap greenhouse gases, creating a feedback loop that exacerbates global warming.
  4. The Big (Green) Apple

    New York City is sometimes called the Capital of the World, the City of Dreams, or the Big Apple, but officials in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s sustainability office would like the city to be known as something else: no less than the most resilient, equitable and sustainable city in the world.And, they have a plan to make that happen.
  5. Minneapolis Invests in 'Green Zones'

    Actively fighting climate change since 1993, Minneapolis was one of the first cities in the world to adopt a framework for reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Today, the city remains a leader in sustainability with an emphasis on bringing environmental justice to its most vulnerable neighborhoods.The city’s goal to reduce community-wide greenhouse gas emissions 15 percent by 2015 was exceeded by two and a half percent. It’s now on pace to reduce emissions 30 percent below 2006 levels by 2025, though many more significant changes are needed (including decarbonization of building heating systems) to achieve its ultimate goal of reducing emissions 80 percent by 2050.
  6. EPA Tool Helps Chicago Visualize Urban Water Flows

    Urban water systems are necessarily complex. Delivering drinking water and treating sewage for millions of people, in addition to managing stormwater across hundreds of square miles, requires an extensive network of pipes, pumps, and treatment facilities.The buried and often hidden nature of this infrastructure adds to its complexity.
  7. The Link Between Energy Efficiency and Clean Air

    Energy efficiency is a proven, low-cost way to reduce pollutants, and it can significantly help 32 states comply with U.S. air quality regulations, according to a new report by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.Despite its value, many states are not taking credit for using energy efficiency to meet federal standards.
  8. Americans Want to Live in Healthy, Sustainable Communities

    At first glance, cities like West Palm Beach, Fla. and Carmel, Ind. may seem worlds apart. But though they are separated by more than 1,000 miles and a vast array of social, political and economic differences, these two cities have one thing in common: they are both leaders in America’s new climate movement.And they are not alone.
  9. What Saves Lives, Money and Ecosystems?

    Environmental policy guided by science saves lives, money, and ecosystems. So reports a team of 11 senior researchers in Environmental Science & Policy.Using air pollution in the United States as a case study, they highlight the success of cleanup strategies backed by long-term environmental monitoring.
  10. Salt Lake City Commits to Zero-Carbon Power Plan

    Things are heating up in Salt Lake City, Utah. And not in a good way.The city is located in a region of the U.S. that climate scientists say is warming at more than twice the national average. It would be bad enough if the only victim of that problem was the area’s $1.3 billion ski resort industry, but local leaders know the stakes are higher than that, as water reserves decline and air quality reaches dangerous levels.
  11. Corporate Giants Help Plano Grow

    In the northeast corner of the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area, Plano, Texas is an economic hub and headquarters to some of America’s biggest companies, including such recognizable brands as Capital One, Toyota, Frito-Lay, Dr. Pepper/Snapple and J.C. Penney.In 2016, Fannie Mae and JP Morgan Chase announced they would move their regional operations to Plano, bringing a combined 7,000 new jobs.
  12. The Financial Risks of Climate Change

    The U.S. municipal market has always faced credit exposure to weather-related and natural catastrophes – such as fires, hurricanes, floods and earthquakes.However, what were previously viewed as one-off implications for creditworthiness – transitory storms, for example – can increasingly be analyzed through the lens of climate change risk. As such, there are possible risks faced by U.S. municipal issuers as a result of a rapidly changing climate.
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