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EPA names Evanston among top local governments using green power

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EPA names Evanston among top local governments using green power

James Park, one of Evanston’s green spaces. The city was recently recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency for its green efforts.

James Park, one of Evanston’s green spaces. The city was recently recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency for its green efforts.

Jeffrey Wang/Daily Senior Staffer

James Park, one of Evanston’s green spaces. The city was recently recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency for its green efforts.

Jeffrey Wang/Daily Senior Staffer

Jeffrey Wang/Daily Senior Staffer

James Park, one of Evanston’s green spaces. The city was recently recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency for its green efforts.

Amelia Langas, Assistant City Editor

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Out of the top 30 local governments in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership, Evanston was ranked 28th for its annual green power usage.

The placement, announced in a Monday news release from the EPA, cited that 79 percent of the city’s total electricity usage is from green power sources, such as solar and wind power. The Green Power Partnership program encourages participating organizations to use green power to reduce environmental impacts associated with traditional electricity usage.

“It’s an excellent recognition,” Evanston’s sustainability coordinator Kumar Jensen told The Daily. “We participate in the EPA’s Green Power Partnership program because we think it’s important to demonstrate leadership so that other municipalities can see who’s leading around the country … and it’s something they can adopt and participate in as well.”

Jensen said the city has been a member of the partnership since 2014 and has a number of green initiatives already in place, such as the Divvy Bike share program and electrical vehicle charging stations.

He added that the city also offers renewable energy through alternative energy suppliers to private residences and small businesses. Evanston purchases renewable energy for about 70 to 80 percent of city facility buildings, he said.

“The community and the city government have a very strong history of leading in the sustainability realm, not just around climate change but around other topics as well, like habitat restoration, migratory bird habitats, clean water and things of that nature,” Jensen said.

Mayor Steve Hagerty committed to reducing Evanston’s carbon emissions in accordance with the Paris Climate Accord by more than 25 percent by 2025, and created the Climate Action and Resiliency Plan Working Group to develop a climate action plan for the city.

Beginning in November, Jensen said, the city will launch a food scrap composting service available to all Evanston properties to further the city’s environmental work.

Email: amelialangas@u.northwestern.edu
Twitter: @AmeliaLangas

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