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Posts tagged ‘#climateSLC’

Climate Week: Years of Living Dangerously Film Screenings

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Salt Lake City Green, in partnership with the Utah Film Center and the Salt Lake City Public Library, are excited to announce a special screening series of the groundbreaking Showtime series, Years of Living Dangerously.

The free film screenings will be held on the first Thursday of each month beginning at 7:00 p.m. at the Salt Lake City Main Library Auditorium. A local speaker panel will be featured following each screening.

The first screening is scheduled for November 5, 2015 and will feature Susan Soleil of Utah Interfaith Power and Light.

We’re excited to offer this incredible series to Salt Lake City residents free of charge!

Learn more & RSVP to the Facebook event.

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Climate Week: Steps to Eliminate Food Waste

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Today is World Food Day. World Food Day is a day of action against hunger. On October 16, people around the world come together to declare their commitment to eradicate hunger in our lifetime. Because when it comes to hunger, the only acceptable number in the world is zero.

Reducing food waste is an important component of climate action at home and worldwide.

Worldwide Food Waste Facts

  • Every year, consumers in industrialized countries waste almost as much food as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa (222 million vs. 230 million tons)
  • The amount of food lost and wasted every year is equal to more than half of the world’s annual cereals crops (2.3 billion tons in 2009/10)
  • More facts

North American Food Waste Facts

  • In the USA, organic waste is the second highest component of landfills, which are the largest source of methane emissions
  • In the USA, 30-40% of the food supply is wasted, equaling more than 20 pounds of food per person per month
  • More facts

So what can you do? Here are the recommendations from the United Nations Environment Programme, Regional Office of North America:

Think. Be a smart shopper and think about what you are buying and when it will be eaten. Wasting food is often a subconscious act – become aware of how much food you throw away. Plan meals and use shopping lists. Bring your leftovers home from restaurants in reusable containers.

Eat. Become a more mindful eater. Eyes bigger than your stomach? Request smaller portions and become a leftovers guru.

Save. Save your food, save your money and save the environment. Donate to food banks and become a conscious consumer.

Learn more at FoodDayUSA.org.

Climate Week: Dining with Discretion

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On Sunday, October 18th at 8:00 a.m. SLCgreen’s Bridget Stuchly and Tyler Poulson will present at the World Parliament of Religions. Their presentation, Dining with Discretion: Food Choices Matter, outlines how personal choices about what and how we eat impact our environment and can either contribute to, or help alleviate, climate change.

The Presentation

Dining with Discretion from SLCgreen

Take Action!

Long story short, there are some very real steps you can take in your everyday eating habits that will have a positive impact on the environment:

  • Eat less meat & dairy
  • Eat more plants
  • Cook smart
  • Waste less
  • Speak out

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Source: Meat Eaters Guide to Climate Change + Health

Source: Meat Eaters Guide to Climate Change + HealthSource: Meat Eaters Guide to Climate Change + Health

Climate Week: Salt Lake Climate Leaders

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During 2015, Salt Lake City launched its Salt Lake Climate Leaders program to engage municipal employees and develop their knowledge base and professional skills in order to create more effective climate change leaders.

The program engages employees who have expressed an interest in professional development and leadership skills related to sustainability. Participants attend interactive monthly meetings and build momentum for more effective and strategic action on climate change across all City departments.

The culmination of the first Salt Lake Climate Leaders program is Salt Lake Climate Week. You can learn more at SLCgreen.com or explore all Climate Week posts on the Green Blog.

Climate Week: Five Actions You Can Take Today!

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Climate action starts with you! Here are five simple actions you can take today to begin reducing your climate impact.

1. Use Cold Water Detergent and Cold Water Setting for Clothes Washer

Emissions-Icon Pounds of CO2 Reduced Annually: 1,270
Money-Icon Annual Savings: $92

Heating water consumes a lot of energy – 90% of the total needed to wash your clothes – always use a cold-water setting and detergent.

2. Replace Your Furnace Filter and Manage Your Thermostat

Emissions-Icon Pounds of CO2 Reduced Annually: 1,800
Money-Icon Annual Savings: $124

Every degree F saves 3% on cooling / heating – set to 60 at night or unoccupied during winter and 78 in summer.  Dirty furnace filters waste energy and should be changed every three months.

3. Properly Inflate Your Tires and Ride with Hive

Emissions-Icon Pounds of CO2 Reduced Annually: 400 (tires only)
Money-Icon Annual Savings: $95 (tires only)

Regularly check and inflate your tires to improve MPGs by 3% – more tips to save fuel at FuelEconomy.gov.
SLC residents, visit RideWithHive.com for details on the City’s discounted transit pass.  Just $42 / month, a 50% discount, gets you unlimited rides on the bus, TRAX and S-Line.

4. Replace at Least Five Lights with LEDs

Emissions-Icon Pounds of CO2 Reduced Annually: 500 (per five lights)
Money-Icon Annual Savings: $40 (per five lights)

90% of the energy used lighting an incandescent bulb goes towards generating heat, not light.  LED lighting is the cheapest lifecycle cost option – purchasing plus operating costs – and Rocky Mountain Power offers great incentives for homes and businesses.

5. Use Reusable Water Bottles and Mugs – Plus, Downsize Your Garbage Can

Emissions-Icon Pounds of CO2 Reduced Annually: 580 (Reusable Drink Containers Only)
Money-Icon Annual Savings: $150 (Reusable Drink Containers Only)

Manufacturing bottles, cans and other drink containers takes energy and creates emissions.  Reduce your footprint and save cash by using reusables.  SLC residents should Google SLCgreen for many more waste tips and additional ways to save, like downsizing your garbage can.  Moving from a 90-gallon bin to a 40-gallon bin will save you $87 / year on your trash bill.  There is also a 60-gallon option that will save you money.

Climate Week: Local Climate Action Receives National Attention

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Under Mayor Ralph Becker’s leadership, Salt Lake City has taken a proactive approach to climate preparedness and resilience. Learn more about the City’s accomplishments and goals on SLCgreen.com.

And that local action has been receiving some national attention! Recently, the White House and U.S. Department of Energy designated Salt Lake City as a Climate Action Champion community. A total of 16 U.S. communities were recognized as inaugural Climate Action Champions.

In March, Mayor Becker was invited to contribute to the White House Blog, touting the progress made right here in Salt Lake City as a national example of success. View “Local Climate Action Takes Center Stage at the National League of Cities Conference.

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ABC 4 News Features Salt Lake Climate Week

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Yesterday, ABC 4 News stopped by Salt Lake City Green to get the scoop on Climate Week — what the City is doing to reduce its impact and what you can do to get started! It’s a fantastic story. Click on the video above to watch the story on Good4Utah.com.

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) – Salt Lake City officially kicked off its first ever Climate Week. The initiative is designed to increase awareness about the local realities of climate change, what the city is doing to prepare for the future and what residents can do to reduce their impact at home.

No matter your stance on climate change, it’s undeniable Utah is heating up.

Salt Lake City’s Sustainability Program Manager Tyler Poulson explained, “In Utah in recent decades temperatures have been increasing about twice the global average and its certainly something that’s not gone unnoticed in Salt Lake City.”

That’s why the city’s Sustainability Division created the group Salt Lake Climate Change Leaders.

“We’re having monthly workshops for about 26 employees from all departments so airport, fire, police, water and everything in between, and we’ve been learning about climate change, its impact locally and how to make a difference,” said Poulson.

Leaders in that group came up with Climate Week to share what they’ve learned with the community. They say there is five easy steps residents can take to reduce their carbon footprint by about 5,000 pounds of CO2 emissions a year, and even save some money about $500 a year.

One of the easiest steps you can take to save yourself about $100 a year and about a 1,000 pounds in CO2 emissions is to wash your clothes in cold water. Poulson said, “About 90% of the energy and emissions associated with washing your clothes is associated with heating the water.”

Some other actions Poulson suggests, “Keeping your tires fully inflated, or if you’re a Salt Lake City resident checking out the Hive pass for public transit. Some other actions include changing out your lightbulbs to LEDs, they’re really energy efficient and starting to look great, and then also downsizing your trash can and using renewables.”

Salt Lake City is practicing what it preaches. In 2008 the Mayor and City Council committed to reducing its municipal footprint 20% below the 2005 level by 2020, and 80% below that by 2050.

To read more on the city’s efforts to date log on to: slcgov.com/slcgreen/climateaction.
To learn more about climate week log on to: slcgov.com/slcgreen/climateweek.

Climate Week: Understanding the Local Impacts of Climate Change

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Dr. Robert Davies with the Utah Climate Center discusses the science of global climate change in his compelling 30 minute presentation, “Earth’s Changing Climate”.  The presentation focuses on the physical phenomenon, our understanding based on observation and measurement. Here are a few highlights:

While Earth’s climate does change naturally, the changes we’re seeing today are unique in Earth’s climate history.  The Earth is warming and not as part of a natural cycle. Why?

Greenhouse gases, like carbon dioxide are increasing in the atmosphere through burning fossil fuels at an ever accelerating rate. As a result, energy is trapped, raising the Earth’s temperature.

Specifically in Utah, temperatures have been rising at about twice the global average over the past 40 years.

The rise in temperatures significantly impacts natural systems, which directly affect human systems. What lies ahead? Catastrophic climate disruption is probable.

The answer, however, is yet to be determined and lies in the choices we make.

Watch the full presentation here. If you want to skip ahead to Utah-specific information, start watching at 14 minutes 30 seconds.

Earth's Changing Climate

Climate Week: SLC in Action, Energy Efficient Technology

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As part of Climate Week, the inaugural class of Salt Lake Climate Leaders have been working within their City departments to promote actions that will have a positive impact on the City’s carbon footprint.

Salt Lake City’s Information Management Systems (IMS) Department kicked things off on Monday with a special showcase featuring energy efficient technology that promotes a greener environment. IMS regularly hosts technology fairs to educate City employees the latest technologies available to streamline operations.

This is the first showcase to feature products that will help City departments save energy, reduce their carbon footprint and increase energy consciousness.

Some of the technologies featured include:

  • Solar charging options and rechargeable battery packs
  • Low voltage/small footprint computing devices
  • Low power & longer life projectors
  • The latest in teleworking and collaboration technology
  • Portable technologies

Learn more about Climate Week and how you can get involved at SLCgreen.com.

 

Climate Week: What SLC is Doing to Combat Climate Change

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Salt Lake City has been recognized as a Climate Action Champion for showing leadership on climate change. The accomplishments of Salt Lake City in the past seven years demonstrate a commitment and successful track record of innovation and leadership to integrate the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and enhance climate resilience into local and regional planning and decision-making.

Here are some of the City’s climate actions, goals, and key initiatives:

Joint Resolution To Reduce Carbon Footprint. Mayor Ralph Becker and the Salt Lake City Council signed a joint resolution in 2008 committing the City to reduce its municipal carbon footprint 20% below the 2005 level by 2020; 50% below the 2005 level by 2040; and, 80% below the 2005 level by 2050.

Community Greenhouse Gas Inventory. The City completed its first community GHG inventory in 2009, which quantified 4.75 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emissions – or 26 metric tons per person – and prompted the City’s commitment to eliminate 1.3 million metric tons of CO2e by 2020. The City also has a goal for reduction of GHG emissions in the community by 80% below the 2005 level by 2050.

Clear the Air Challenge. The City created the Clear the Air Challenge to engage citizens in voluntary reductions in vehicle miles traveled, resulting in the elimination of over 9.5 million single-occupant vehicle miles traveled and reducing more than 7.5 million pounds of GHG emissions between 2009 and 2014.

Salt Lake City Sustainable Code Revision. The Salt Lake City Sustainable Code Revision project is a ground-breaking initiative to incorporate sustainability provisions into zoning and subdivision ordinances.

Salt Lake City Energy and Transportation Sustainability Plan. The Salt Lake City Energy and Transportation Sustainability Plan (2011) details strategies for the City to contribute to climate resilience, cleaner air, greater energy security, a green energy economy, and protection of our water supply, wildlife, and other natural resources. Salt Lake City Energy and Transportation Sustainability Plan goals include:

  • Decrease total building energy use in the city by 5%, to 35 million MBTUs by 2015
  • Transform all City government buildings into net-zero facilities
  • Increase renewable energy generation on City facilities to 2.5 megawatt by 2015
  • Generation of 10 megawatts of solar energy in the community by 2015
  • Reduction of vehicle miles traveled by residents by 6.5% by 2015

Salt Lake City Public Safety Building. The City’s $125 million Public Safety Building is the first public safety building in the nation constructed to achieve Net Zero energy use due to the use of multiple innovative energy efficiencies and solar-photovoltaic (PV) technologies.

Livability in Salt Lake City 2012-2016. Mayor Becker published his agenda, Livability in Salt Lake City 2012-2016, to frame a broad vision of local climate response goals, strategies, and actions that lead to greater resiliency, vitality, accessibility, sustainability, and diversity further distilled in the Sustainable Salt Lake Plan 2015.

Sustainable Salt Lake – Plan 2015. The Sustainable Salt Lake – Plan 2015 (Plan 2015) grounds the City’s broad and ambitious climate response strategy with goals, key metrics, and milestones related to air quality, energy, transportation, water resources, urban forestry, and open space. Sustainable City Dashboard. The Sustainable City Dashboard is an innovative new online tool to track key metrics and milestones associated with the Plan 2015 and promote an increased level of public engagement and feedback on climate response initiatives.

To learn more about Salt Lake City’s climate actions, visit SLCgreen.com!