ICLEI announces nine STAR Beta Communities

Back in October, we brought you information on ICLEI’s new STAR Community Index, a national framework and performance-management system expected to be launched in 2011 that will allow local governments to measure and rate their sustainability performance. ICLEI has now announced the nine selected STAR Beta Communities. They are: Atlanta, GA Boulder, CO Chattanooga, TN … Continued


New report: State transportation decisions could save money and reduce carbon emissions

Download the ReportA new report released today by Smart Growth America and the Natural Resources Defense Council found that transportation policies in every state could save money and reduce carbon emissions by making smarter decisions with state funds.

In “Getting Back on Track: Climate Change and State Transportation Policy,” SGA and NRDC found that current transportation policies in almost all 50 states either fail to curb carbon emission rates or, in some cases, actually increase emissions. This contradiction between state policies and broader efforts to reduce carbon emissions means not only that many states are missing opportunities to protect clean air; it means they are missing economic opportunities as well.

In a press conference this morning, former Maryland Governor Parris Glendening remarked:

Transportation makes up an enormous proportion of our national economy and our environmental impact: it must be front and center as we think about how to get the most out of our public investments. The states that rose to the top in this report, California, Maryland and New Jersey, are there because they are meeting the challenge to innovate.


Congressional offices announce some TIGER II awards in advance of official USDOT release

Want to stay on top of this and other federal sustainability news? Subscribe to our email updates or RSS feed using the links in the top right corner! UPDATE 10/20/2010: The TIGER II awards lists have been released! View the capital grant recipients list here, and view the planning recipients list here. In advance of … Continued


Exhaustive study shows power of walkable neighborhoods to reduce driving while succeeding in the marketplace

ATLANTA — Researchers from Georgia Tech and the University of British Columbia have released a report summarizing an unparalleled, six-year analysis of the connections among travel habits, development patterns and housing demand in metro Atlanta. Among dozens of significant findings, the study showed that people who live in more walkable neighborhoods — with a mix of housing types and streets that connect to shops, offices and other destinations — drive 30 percent less than those in conventional auto-oriented settings, even when they own the same number of cars at the same rate. The key findings of this ground-breaking study are likely to be applicable to most major metro areas in the country.