Procurement plays key role in Pittsburgh’s commitment to be Carbon Neutral by 2050
Earth Day 2021 - Mayor William Peduto, City of Pittsburgh, USA, issued a new Executive Order that builds upon Pittsburgh’s leadership in fighting climate change by committing the city to become fully carbon-neutral by 2050. Leveraging the city’s procurement is one of the cornerstones for reaching carbon neutrality.
The Order reviews concrete steps the Peduto Administration has taken the past seven years on climate change efforts and lays out the next moves City of Pittsburgh departments and authorities must make to further protect the environment.
The centerpiece of the Order is Pittsburgh joining the ICLEI Local Governments for Sustainability Network, in which communities agree to reduce their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and GHG avoidance to a net-zero emission level at the latest by 2050.
“Climate change is a global issue but has severe local impacts on Pittsburgh residents, especially upon those in low-income communities who bear the brunt of negative impacts from rising temperatures, tainted air and water, and severe weather,” Mayor Peduto said. “The good news is we are taking serious steps to confront these issues and emerge from this crisis with a stronger economy and a better future for generations of Pittsburgh residents to come.”
One of these steps is leveraging the city’s purchasing power to reduce GHG emissions. The GLCN member has made first achievements towards building a fossil fuel-free fleet, purchasing 100% renewable electricity for major facilities in the City government or adopting a Net Zero Ready Building Ordinance to commit to constructing highly energy-efficient municipal buildings.
Going forward, the Order further requires for example that:
- All City Departments to implement climate impact scoring when crafting budgets and conduct a climate risk assessment for infrastructure investments and municipal operations
- The Department of Public Works to issue a Request for Proposals to develop a comprehensive strategy to improve energy efficiency in all City facilities
- The Department of Mobility to issue a Request for Proposals to transition the City’s streetlights to LED and take into account Equity Indicators throughout the conversion project
- The Departments of Public Works and Mobility and Infrastructure and the Office of Management and Budget or their designees to take necessary steps in collaboration with the Public Parking Authority of Pittsburgh to leverage public assets to provide additional electric vehicle charging stations and infrastructure that can be utilized by residents and visitors
- Taking necessary actions to, whenever possible, replace retiring municipal vehicles with electric or other alternative fuel equivalents and procure renewable sources of fuel, in collaboration with the Equipment Leasing Authority and the Interdepartmental Electric Vehicle Task Force
- Establishing an Energy Planning Delivery Unit to create and publicize guidelines for developers and builders to advance equity-focused greenhouse gas reduction and climate preparedness strategies in their projects.
Mayor Peduto has been one of Pittsburgh’s leading environmental voices across three decades in local government. He is the North American representative to the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, and in February joined international leaders including Special Presidential Envoy on Climate John Kerry, White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy and UN Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions Mike Bloomberg to celebrate the United States rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement, among other accomplishments.
The full Order is available here.