Challenge for Sustainability Update

The Challenge for Sustainability (Challenge) has continued to engage internal and external stakeholders in an effort to evolve this long-standing, successful program. As part of the planning process, Challenge staff analyzed accomplishments since the program’s inception in 2009 which include an annual increase in participating square footage around 24%, an aggregate annual electricity reduction around 1%, and an aggregate annual greenhouse gas emissions reduction around 2% per year. This keeps Challenge participants on track to reach the City and State goals of 25% GHG reduction by 2020. To recognize this success, Challenge coordinators hosted the 7th annual Challenge for Sustainability Awards in March which included comments from the City of Boston’s Chief of the Environment, Austin Blackmon, and featured President of the Union of Concerned Scientists, Ken Kimmell as the keynote speaker. Awards were given for the greatest greenhouse gas, energy, water, and waste reduction as well as the annual Peer Award. Additionally, three Challenge participants were added to the ‘Target 2020 Leaders’ plaque which recognizes individual facilities and organizations for their accomplishment of the 25% by 2020 goal. A Better City is currently refining a draft plan to take the Challenge forward with a goal of launching an updated version in 2017. 

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