Sustainable Development Update - January 2017 #3

by Allen Matkins
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Sustainable Development Focus

More EV charging stations likely in multifamily

Bisnow - Jan 17 As electric vehicles gain in popularity, more residential communities will have charging stations as one of their amenities. Campbell-based ChargePoint has partnered with many developers, including Oyster Development in the Bay Area to add EV charging stations within multifamily communities. ChargePoint also is collaborating with San Diego Gas and Electric, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, and Southern California Edison to bring EV charging for multifamily sites in underserved and disadvantaged communities. PG&E also said recently it plans to install 7,500 charging stations throughout Northern and Central California.

How military microgrids could save the country on energy costs

Greentech Media - Jan 17 The U.S. military could save hundreds of millions of dollars each year by switching its bases from diesel backup generators to more efficient microgrids, while enhancing security against the threat of grid outages from extreme weather or cyberattacks, according to a new report commissioned by The Pew Charitable Trusts. In one of their final public events, assistant secretaries for the Army, Navy, and Air Force made the case for continuing investments in military energy security and efficiency -- and opening partnerships between bases and surrounding utilities and communities -- to an incoming Trump administration that’s likely to be more focused on cost savings than on promoting clean energy. The U.S. military is already the country’s leader in microgrid development, with roughly one-third of U.S. capacity expected through 2020, according to GTM Research. But the potential remains far greater, the report noted. With threats of cyber-induced or weather-related outages on the increase, it’s an issue that's becoming more pressing as well.

Best green infrastructure practices for cities

USGBC - Jan 10 In addition to taking root in climate action planning, cities are weaving green infrastructure into sustainability efforts and throughout myriad other initiatives. Some leading U.S. cities have already taken steps to invest in green infrastructure in a way that ensures benefits across the triple bottom line. For example, since 2010, Baltimore has been focused on reversing urban blight using green infrastructure and community spaces through the Vacants to Value program. Since the program launched, 700 new community-managed spaces have been created from previously vacant properties. In Portland, Oregon, the city’s climate action plan prioritizes urban forest development in underserved areas, helping to grow the urban canopy with a more equitable distribution. Unlike most plans, Portland’s sets a minimum canopy coverage target, which prioritizes underserved neighborhoods.

San Francisco’s bus rapid transit future is taking shape

Next City - Jan 17 San Francisco transit planners have been talking about building bus rapid transit for the better part of two decades. It will be at least another three years before the first rapid transit buses hit the streets. But the San Francisco County Transportation Authority (SFCTA) has two bus rapid transit lines in the works, and both recently took important steps toward becoming reality. In late December, the Federal Transit Administration announced it was awarding SFCTA $75 million to help fund the Van Ness Avenue bus rapid transit project. On January 5, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved designs for the Geary bus rapid transit line.

Federal government exceeds $4 billion goal for renewable energy, efficiency investments

Proud Green Building - Jan 16 The U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy has recognized 21 federal agencies, which, over the last five years, have funded 340 projects aimed at reducing energy spending in the federal government. The awards exceeded President Obama’s Performance Contracting Challenge goal to trim federal energy expenses by $8 billion over the next 18 years and create more than 30,000 jobs, according to the Department of Energy. The awarded projects surpassed the challenge goal by $200 million in awarded value by the end of 2016.

Top retailers, tech companies could contract 60 GW of green energy by 2025

Utility Dive - Jan 13 Major retail and technology brands will procure 60 gigawatts of renewable energy by 2025, according to a new report, and those companies will locate their operations and employees in states where the procurement is easiest. The report, released by the Retail Industry Leaders Association and the Information Technology Industry Council, ranks states for the ease with which companies can procure solar, wind, and other carbon-free energy sources. The top five states were Iowa, Illinois, New Jersey, California, and Texas. Almost half of the Fortune 500 companies are seeking to locate operations in states with clean energy production, the two firms say.

 

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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