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MAYOR PARKER COMMITS TO FURTHER REDUCE CITY'S GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS

February 5, 2014 -- Speaking at the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group Mayor’s Summit in Johannesburg today, Mayor Annise Parker committed to reduce the City of Houston’s Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions by another 10 percent.

The mayor spoke about the value of measuring and managing data in advancing city climate agendas.  Her speech highlighted the 26 percent reduction in GHG emissions the City has achieved since 2007.

"You can’t manage what you don’t measure,” said Mayor Parker.  “Our achievement is impressive, but we must not stop there. I believe we have the capacity to reduce local GHG emissions by another 10 percent by 2016.  Houston has proven to the world that it can maintain its title as the energy capital of the world while at the same time pursuing green policies that lift our reputation as a world leader in sustainability.”

In a 2007 inventory of the City’s Local Government Operations Emissions, 58 percent of GHG emissions came from the building and industrial energy sectors, 32 percent came from the transportation sector, and 10 percent was attributable to the waste sector. These three areas, energy use, transportation and waste, will remain the focus as the City works to achieve another 10 percent reduction in its GHG output.

How will this be accomplished:

  • Continuing energy efficiency retrofits and LEED certification in municipal buildings
  • Increasing the purchase of renewable power for municipal buildings
  • Utilizing new technologies, such as LED lights and/or smart energy tools, to reduce energy usage
  • Expanding use of hybrid, electric and CNG powered vehicles as well as expanding Houston FleetShare
  • Expanding recycling and utilizing innovative technologies to increase waste diversion

In addition to attending the C40 summit, Mayor Parker is leading a Greater Houston Partnership trade mission to South Africa.  The trade delegation includes State Senator Rodney Ellis (D-Houston), City Council Member Jack Christie and Houston-area companies ranging from energy and aviation to real estate and international trade and investments.  The delegation hosted a “Doing Business with Houston” seminar for South African businesses and investors earlier in the week.

More than 370 Houston companies report business or trade ties with South Africa.  Of the 214 firms in the Houston region affiliated with subsidiaries in South Africa, 14 are headquartered in Houston.

The Summit:
The fifth biennial C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group Mayors Summit will take place February 4th-6th, 2014 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Hosted by the city of Johannesburg and delivered in collaboration with the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40), this event brings together C40 Mayors from around the world to advance urban solutions to global climate change through individual efforts as well as international engagement and collaboration. 

About C40:
The C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40) is a network of large and engaged cities from around the world committed to implementing meaningful and sustainable climate-related actions locally that will help address climate change globally. C40 was established in 2005 and expanded via a partnership in 2006 with President William J. Clinton’s Climate Initiative (CCI). The current chair of the C40 is Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes; 108th Mayor of New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg serves as President of the Board. To learn more about the work of C40 and our Cities, please visit www.c40.org, follow us on Twitter @c40cities and like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/C40Cities.

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