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DOEE Issues Reports on How District Is Meeting Sustainability, Climate and Clean Energy Goals

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

CONTACT: Cecile Green (DOEE) – (202) 617-1097; [email protected]

Highlights Include More Solar Energy, Increased Tree Canopy, Anacostia River Clean-up Plan, Green Jobs

(WASHINGTON, DC) – Today, the Bowser Administration, through the Department of Energy and the Environment (DOEE), released three reports detailing progress on the Mayor’s vision to transform DC into the healthiest, greenest, most livable city in the country. The Sustainable DC, Climate Ready DC and Clean Energy DC progress reports tout achievements such as the expansion of solar energy, a new clean-up plan for the Anacostia River, the planting of over 15,000 trees in one year alone, and the hiring of local residents for green jobs.

“Under the leadership of Mayor Bowser, the District has established one of the most progressive track records in the nation for sustainability and working to mitigate the major causes of climate change: fossil fuel consumption.” said DOEE Director Tommy Wells. “We are doing this with an aggressive focus on equity and our successful efforts are providing models for other urban cities across the United States.”

The Mayor’s Sustainable DC 2.0 plan focuses on balancing the District’s environmental, economic, and social needs for today’s and tomorrow’s generations. Climate Ready DC and Clean Energy DC are more targeted subsets of that overall plan. While Sustainable DC has released annual progress reports, this is the first year all three programs issued reports supporting the Mayor’s targets for a fishable and swimmable Anacostia River, 100% clean electricity, increased affordable housing, and zero waste by 2032.

The 2020 Sustainable DC progress report notes that in 2019:

  • 92% of the 143 actions in Sustainable DC 2.0 were underway.
  • DOEE’s Solar for All program installed 7 megawatts of new solar generation capacity in 2019 and now serves 8,600 low- and moderate-income District households, reducing their electricity costs by 50% or equivalent.
  • The District's overall reduction in carbon footprint reached 30% (from the 2006 baseline).
  • Public investment in wildlife and habitat preservation was unprecedented. DOEE reached a new Anacostia River Sediment Project milestone with the release of its proposed clean-up plan.
  • The District was named the #1 park system in the United States by the Trust for Public Land.
  • 8 million pounds of local produce were purchased from regional farms for school meals, representing a 23% increase from 2018.
  • The Office of Planning issued a Housing Equity Report, which provides goals for the equitable distribution of affordable housing and supports DC’s vision for creating 36,000 new housing units by 2025.
  • The Department of Public Works launched a popular home composting program, including classes and equipment, to complement its successful Food Waste Drop-off program at DC farmers markets in all eight wards.
  • DC Water and the Department of Small and Local Business Development hired 149 local residents for green jobs through training and workforce programs.
  • DOEE established the Office of Urban Agriculture.

The Climate Ready DC Plan identifies strategies to help DC prepare for the impacts of climate change, including increasingly hotter temperatures. The progress report highlights that since 2015, the District has expanded tree canopy in all neighborhoods most at risk to extreme heat. Heat sensitive neighborhoods in DC include Columbia Heights, Carver Langston, and Buzzard Point. The District also planted over 15,000 trees in 2019; trees are one of the most effective methods for cooling and combatting the urban heat island.

The Clean Energy DC (CEDC) progress report highlights the exceptional progress the District has made on the CEDC plan’s 57 action items within the last two years. This includes the enactment of the landmark Clean Energy DC Omnibus Act last year, which strengthened and codified many of the Plan’s most ambitious initiatives, such as the establishment of a first-of-its-kind Building Energy Performance Standard.

Sustainable DC 2.0 reflects the participation of thousands of residents and coordination across District Government. More information is available at sustainable.dc.gov/progress.