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Green Building United’s new executive director talks climate, health and equity

This month Green Building United (GBU), a regional organization that fosters transformative impact in communities through green building education and advocacy, announced Rich Freeh as the organization’s new executive director. Before taking the position, Freeh spent seven and a half years with the Philadelphia Office of Sustainability working on clean energy planning and sustainability reporting.

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8 mins read

New Legislation Facilitates Energy Efficiency Improvements

It isn’t cheap to make a large commercial building more energy efficient. Even when improvements will eventually pay for themselves, that timeframe can be longer than owners plan to hold onto the building, according to Philadelphia City Councilmember Derek Green. With no prospect to recoup the upfront expenses, building owners often decide not to invest

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1 min read
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Concerned about accelerating climate change, activists at the Clean Air Council are pushing Amtrak to reverse its switch from steam power to gas boilers

Since Philadelphia’s 30th Street Amtrak Station announced in late March that it would switch from steam power to gas boilers, activists have been pushing back on the station’s claims that the move aligns with a sustainable future for the city. “That is simply a false narrative,” Clean Air Council Executive Director Joseph Minott says. “Everyone

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5 mins read

Fossil fuel lobbying threatens decarbonization prospects

Who expected the fossil fuel industry to fight fair? In 2021 12.2% of the energy used in the United States came from renewable sources, as did 20.1% of our electricity generation, according to the US Energy Information Administration. And that is projected to grow. Facing a shrinking share of the energy pie, the fossil fuel

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1 min read
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An advocacy group, citing economic and environmental reasons, pushes for investment in geothermal heating and cooling

It’s been just over six years since Bartram’s Garden made the switch to geothermal heating and cooling, using ground source heat pumps (or GSHP) to heat the public garden’s 18th century buildings. By drilling deep into the ground, geothermal systems tap into heat that is stored in the earth. It greatly reduces the need for

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8 mins read
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This initiative from Philadelphia Energy Authority is connecting programs and organizations to support homeowners in low-income housing

When homeowners make the switch from oil to electric home systems it’s not just better for the environment—it also saves them money. But while the money a family saves on their home energy bills—thanks to solar panels, electric heat pumps, and more—can often pay off the switch in just a few years, affording the initial

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3 mins read
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The Energy Co-op is now offering biogas sourced from landfills

Alexandra Kroger, energy program director at The Energy Co-op, is hoping that Philadelphia’s biggest utility providers notice the work they are doing and get inspired. “As the demand for our renewable energy products becomes more apparent, PECO and PGW might see that as a market signal favoring renewable energy,” Kroger says. “We can’t speculate if

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2 mins read
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Sunoco’s Mariner East 2 ruins quality of life in Delaware County through eminent domain

Along the long, winding roads of Glen Riddle, a small community close to Media in Delaware County, sits Glen Riddle Station Apartments, a 124-unit complex at the center of yet another Mariner East pipeline controversy. On May 26 more than 200 residents of Glen Riddle Station found themselves without water, and Pennsylvania State Police launched

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6 mins read
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How volunteers at one Philly condo building promote sustainability and green living to their neighbors.

In 2006, the board of The Philadelphian, a condominium located on Pennsylvania Avenue, faced a financial dilemma. A previous Board of Directors had allowed necessary upkeep to fall by the wayside for years, leaving the 1960s building in desperate need of repairs. Rundown appliances, poorly insulated areas, and many more interior issues were creating high

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3 mins read
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