Friday, May 25, 2007

Clinton Foundation Announces Green City Makeovers

I wanted to make my readers aware that former President Clinton's William J. Clinton foundation announced earlier this month that, as a project of the Clinton Climate Initiative, there will be a $5 billion global effort to fight global warming by retrofitting existing buildings with more energy efficient products, thereby reducing the emission of greenhouse gases. Fifteen of the world's largest cities, including New York City, are slated for a "green" makeover. NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg has said,
"Mayors are responsible for coming up with pragmatic solutions and implementing them effectively – and this program will allow us to do that. We've laid out an ambitious agenda to reduce our carbon emissions, 80 percent of which come from buildings, while being economically competitive and continuing to grow."
Here are some facts about the new initiative from The Environment News Service website:

The Energy Efficiency Building Retrofit Program will provide both cities and their private building owners with access to the necessary funds to retrofit existing buildings with more energy efficient products, which is exptected to produce energy savings of between 20 and 50 percent.

Honeywell, Johnson Controls, Inc, Siemens and Trane will conduct energy audits, perform building retrofits, and guarantee the energy savings of the retrofit projects.

ABN AMRO, Citi, Deutsche Bank, JPMorgan Chase, and UBS have committed to arrange $1 billion each to finance cities and private building owners to undertake these retrofits at no net cost, doubling the global market for energy retrofit in buildings.

These banks will work alongside energy efficiency finance specialist Hannon Armstrong and CCI to develop effective mechanisms to deploy this capital globally. Cities and building owners will pay back the loans plus interest with the energy savings generated by the reduced energy costs thanks to the building retrofits.

An initial group of 15 of the world's largest cities has agreed to participate in the retrofit program, and offer their municipal buildings for the first round of energy retrofits - Bangkok, Berlin, Chicago, Houston, Johannesburg, Karachi, London, Melbourne, Mexico City, New York, Rome, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Tokyo, and Toronto.

ASHRAE [The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers] will play a primary role in former President Bill Clinton’s initiative to reduce energy consumption in existing buildings by providing design guidance and tools to reach energy efficiency targets.

A link to excerpts from the Press Conference about the new project is linked at The Clinton Foundation website.