PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Around 50 buildings have joined the Philadelphia 2030 District initiative and pledged to improve their energy efficiency by 50 percent by the year 2030. According to an update released by the project this week, it’s already more than halfway to its target.
Nearly 80 percent of Philadelphia's carbon emissions come from large buildings and industry, so reducing energy use in buildings is crucial to achieving the city's climate goals.
The Philadelphia 2030 District is a voluntary effort by building owners and managers to reduce their carbon footprint. Just two years into the program, Director Katie Bartolotta said the participating buildings are already surpassing goals.
“Our buildings are outperforming alike building stock by over 29 percent, which is really exciting for us because that number keeps building and translating every year into annual savings,” she said.
“Some things lower, no-cost, like monitoring their energy to see where there are opportunities for savings — if they can engage tenants in energy reduction campaigns or change the way they’re operating the building, all the way to doing whole-building retrofits.”
The participating buildings total 23 million square feet of space, and Bartolotta said that number keeps growing. She said the participants have also reduced water use by 20 percent and improved stormwater management.
Philadelphia is one of 22 cities to develop these energy-saving “districts.” Participating buildings include City Hall, the Cira Centre, One Logan Square, and the Blue Cross building.
This piece originally appeared on KYW News Radio.