Tag Archives: Environmental Protection Agency

Partnership for Sustainable Communities Celebrates Third Anniversary

partnership for sustainable communitiesLast week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Regional Administrator Gwen Keyes Fleming joined Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Regional Administrator Ed Jennings, Jr. and Federal Transit Administration (FTA) Regional Administrator Dr. Yvette Taylor to celebrate the third anniversary of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities. The interagency collaboration helps communities nationwide improve their access to affordable housing, lower transportation costs and increase transportation options, while protecting people’s health and the environment.

“Three years ago, EPA embarked on this innovative partnership to change how we interact with our stakeholders and bring about change in the community,” said EPA Regional Administrator Gwen Keyes Fleming.   “The programs and projects that are now in place here in Atlanta and across the Southeast, exemplify what can be accomplished when citizens, states, cities and federal agencies work together.  We look forward to continuing this partnership and assisting each of these communities in achieving its long-term economic, environmental and public health goals.

“Atlanta’s Partnership for Sustainable Communities has really allowed us to do the kind of essential projects that invest directly in our communities, reduce transportation costs for our families, improve house affordability, save energy and increase access to work, play and home,” said Mayor Kasim Reed.  “I applaud the EPA, HUD, the Department of Transportation and Department of Labor for their tremendous efforts.  Through this partnership, we can work as a team to support ongoing initiatives, promote economic development and receive technical assistance on vital projects.”

Since announcing the partnership, agencies have dedicated more than $2.5 billion in assistance nationally to more than 200 communities in 48 states to help meet transportation and housing goals, while also promoting equitable development, protecting the environment and addressing climate change. In addition, $238 million has been spent on America’s rural communities.

The partnership, now in its fourth year, works to provide communities with faster, streamlined access to federal resources and programs, and works closely with other states, local governments and federal agencies to ensure that partnership programs use federal resources effectively.

For more information about the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, visit:www.sustainablecommunities.gov/.

Tips for a Cool Summer

summer lakeIt’s officially summer! Time to relax by the pool, go on vacation, spend time with friends and family and more. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) wants to make sure you stay cool, safe and under budget this summer, so they’ve provided a few tips to guarantee this summer is the best one yet:

  • Energy Star savings for your home: Cooling off comes at a huge cost for homeowners/ Lower your utility bill by using Energy Star qualified lighting, raising your thermostat two degrees and using ceiling fans can help cool off costs.
  • Breathe Easy: People spend more time indoors in the summer when it’s hot. Make sure your air is mold, radon and carbon monoxide free, so you can breathe easy.
  • Stay SunWise: Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S. Be sure you practice safe sun habits before heading out for summer fun.
  • Have a beach blast! If you’re making a trip to the shore, make sure your plan includes ways to stay safe at the beach.
  • Bug Off! Mosquitoes and ticks carry diseases that be prevented by using proper protection. Make sure you check the label before spraying away!
  • Increase gas mileage: There are plenty of ways to improve your fuel economy including obeying the speed limit, going easy on the breaks, avoiding hard accelerations, reducing idle time, unloading necessary items and removing unused racks.
  • Water wise: Keep water from going to waste by watering in the morning, and installing WaterSense labeled irrigation systems.
  • Clean Green: Cleaning your grill, car, deck, boat or RV? Make sure your cleaner is earth friendly by using only those labeled Designed for the Envinroment (DfE).
  • Project Compost: Looking for a fun summer project that beats the heat? Try composting.
  • Go Mobile: Want to connect with the EPA on the go? They have an app for that! Check your local air quality, UV index and more all from your smartphone.
  • Make memories: Help the EPA capture the State of the Environment by submitting environmental photos to their Documerica project.
  • Check in: Hotels spend more than $2,000 per room on energy each year. Make sure your hotel is saving money and the environment by choosing one that is Energy Star rated.
  • Summer Inspiration: Keep your creative juices flowing by submitting a meaningful story or idea in just six words.

Be sure to visit the EPA‘s site for more tips for a cool summer. If you’re looking to make a move, be sure to check out all of the green Atlanta new homes on Atlanta Real Estate Forum.

EPA Works With Florida School To Improve Green Conditions

On Feb. 18, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designated Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University (FAMU) as a Center of Excellence for Watershed Management. The EPA also entered into an agreement with the university, pledging to support campus greening and sustainability. As part of the agreement, the organization will also work to enhance the university’s environmental policy and science curricula and provide opportunities for students interested in environmental careers.

A ceremony was held on FAMU’s campus where two memorandums of understanding were signed, making the partnership official. Gwen Keyes Fleming, the EPA regional administrator for Region 4, was on hand as were several members of the university’s administration. FAMU became the first Center of Excellence for Watershed Management in Florida and the eighth in the Southeast.

To be recognized as a Center for Excellence by the EPA, an institution must meet several requirements that include showing expertise in identifying and addressing watershed needs, involving students and faculty in watershed research that explores all aspects of problem management, delivering and accounting for results and forming partnerships with other organizations.

Benefits of becoming a Center for Excellence include technical assistance from the EPA, letters of support for grant opportunities and promotion of the Center to stakeholders.

For more information about watershed management visit http://water.epa.gov/type/watersheds/index.cfm.