Kenney Announces Climate Initiative for Philadelphia

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MAYOR Jim Kenney

Mayor Jim Kenney yesterday joined leaders from business and industry, including global law firm Holland & Knight, to launch the Climate Collaborative of Greater Philadelphia. During the public signing event, leaders established and reaffirmed their commitments to address climate change as a united group.

This announcement comes just days after the Mayor returned from a week abroad attending the ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability conference and C40 World Mayors Summit in Copenhagen. Without an ambitious and coordinated effort to address the contributing factors to climate change in the next decade, experts say the harmful impacts will become irreversible by 2030.

“The City is making strides toward meeting our own climate goals, but quite frankly, we cannot do this alone,” said the Mayor. “Our administration committed the City to cutting citywide carbon pollution 80% and achieving a 100% carbon-free electricity grid by 2050, as well as powering all City buildings on 100% renewable electricity by 2030. That’s why I am launching the Climate Collaborative of Greater Philadelphia so that we can bring together other institutions to address climate change.”

“Philadelphia’s Climate Collaborative proves that ambitious climate work is achievable through dedicated public- and private-sector collaboration,” said Antha Williams, head of environmental programs at Bloomberg Philanthropies. “Bloomberg Philanthropies is grateful to support this important effort as part of the American Cities Climate Challenge mission to spur local progress on climate solutions.”

“Climate change is an issue that will impact every individual and business,” said John Martini, Holland & Knight’s Philadelphia office executive partner. “As lawyers, we are in a unique position to use our skills to help clients and the community leverage innovation, capital, and other resources to develop real solutions to mitigate carbon emissions. We’re pleased to join the Climate Collaborative in this endeavor. Anything we can do to positively impact climate change is among the most important work any of us can do with our legal careers.”

The Collaborative will serve as an all-inclusive platform for leaders, businesses, and institutions to get involved in the effort to protect current and future generations. Collaborative member Holland & Knight’s Philadelphia office, for example, announced its pro bono/community service climate commitment designed to address issues associated with growth and investments, emerging companies in the clean food/clean technology industries, and reducing the carbon footprint of the firm’s local office.

To date, 40 Philadelphia area organizations have signed on to join the Collaborative, to learn more, visit https://phillyclimatecollab.com/.

To join the Climate Collaborative, institutional partners must agree to either:
1. Publicly reaffirm (or expand on) their currently adopted climate-related goals or;
2. Adopt or commit to adopting public-facing, climate-related goals
To support these ambitious goals, the Collaborative will provide members with access to workshops and technical assistance that will facilitate the implementation of a suite of climate-related action items. The Collaborative hopes this type of technical assistance from its members will complement ongoing efforts like Philadelphia 2030 District, which continues to make progress in furthering local climate commitments.

To create momentum and progress immediately, The Climate Collaborative of Greater Philadelphia is hosting its first workshop today, Oct. 17, 2019. The day-long workshop will help large institutions better understand the opportunity to procure renewable electricity through off-site power purchase agreements (PPAs). Through support from the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge, experts from Rocky Mountain Institute and World Resources Institute will facilitate the workshop.

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