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Home » News & Stories » GREEN LIST: SSDN Announces New Fiscal Sponsor, USDN; IECC Voting Efforts Made an Impact, Orange County, FL Hires New Resilience and Sustainability Officer; Erin Gill of Knoxville, TN Receives a Promotion;

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GREEN LIST: SSDN Announces New Fiscal Sponsor, USDN; IECC Voting Efforts Made an Impact, Orange County, FL Hires New Resilience and Sustainability Officer; Erin Gill of Knoxville, TN Receives a Promotion;

  • The Southeast Sustainability Directors Network (SSDN) is pleased to announce that it will be fiscally sponsored by the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN) starting February 1, 2020. Through fiscal sponsorship, SSDN will become a project of USDN. SSDN will use this opportunity to better align with USDN and other partners to help scale sustainability best practices work happening in the Southeast. As a project of USDN, SSDN also seeks to further develop network governance and strategy best practices, and develop stronger communications and relationships among USDN and the ten other regional Partner Networks. We would like to thank our former fiscal sponsor, Global Philanthropy Partnership for all their hard work and partnership over the years.
  • SSDN Members ICC Voting Efforts Made an Impact: Preliminary voting results on the 2021 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) are in! The outcome of over a year of effort to update the national model energy code was released yesterday and is estimated to bring at least 10% better efficiency for decades to come for both residential and commercial buildings that follow the IECC. This is the second biggest efficiency gain in the last decade for the IECC and puts buildings on a glide path to deliver better comfort, higher productivity, increased value and lower operating costs. The changes also mitigate carbon emissions from buildings, which account for 39% of carbon in the United States. A big thank you to members Bridget Herring of the City of Asheville, NC and Kris Stenger of Winter Park FL for all your efforts in leading the charge. Thank you to all our SSDN members for creating the change we want to see. Together we do make a difference!
  • Orange County, FL Hires Chief Sustainability and Resilience Officer: Continuing his efforts to steer the Orange County government into new areas of focus, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings announced Thursday he has hired Jeff Benavides to be the county’s first chief sustainability and resilience officer. Welcome to SSDN Jeff, we are excited to have you!
  • SSDN Member, Erin Gill of Knoxville, TN Takes On a New Role: Erin Gill, the Director of Sustainability under Mayor Madeline Rogero, will serve as Chief Policy Officer and oversee Communications, Sustainability, and the Center for Service Innovation, as well as State/Federal legislative affairs and other projects. Also under Policy will be a new division of Community Empowerment, led by Charles Lomax, a former Knoxville-Knox County Planning Commissioner and City Council candidate.  Congratulations, Erin!!!
  • Orange County Considers a Tougher Ban on Plastics: Orange county, FL is considering a tougher ban on single use plastic items like plastic forks, plates, straws and styrofoam cups.
  • Atlanta, GA Receives Partners for Places Grant: Atlanta is creating the city’s first publicly owned food forest in an underserved community deemed a “food desert” because of a lack of access to fresh produce. The grant will be used to support education and volunteer programs at the seven-acre food forest located on one of the last remaining farmsteads in the area. The funding for the Urban Food Forest at Brown Mills will help establish volunteer and educational programs that encourage people to learn more about how food is produced and help foster a connection to the cultural and social history of the community.
  • Buncombe County, NC’s Efforts in Developing a Clean Energy Future are Recognized in the News: In Buncombe County, several sustainability projects are positioning the county to be a leader in North Carolina’s clean energy future. At the end of 2017, the Buncombe County government set a goal to go 100 percent renewable for all county operations by 2030, and 100 percent renewable as a community by 2042. To read more about Buncombe County’s 100 percent renewable energy plan and view their plan for reaching their goals, check out their website
  • Gretna, LA Incorporates Green Infrastructure in Downtown Plaza Renovation: The project incorporates multiple green infrastructure applications including bioswales, permeable pavers, and underground stormwater storage modules to reduce flood risk.  Additionally, the project satisfies other community needs, serving as the keystone placemaking project of the City’s Gretna Downtown 2020 plan.  This project will be the first completed public infrastructure project in the Greater New Orleans Region to showcase how green infrastructure can be used to satisfy multiple community demands.   In addition to the flood risk reduction benefits, the project is anticipated to support Gretna’s downtown development goals, provide opportunities for urban ecological restoration, reduce urban heat island effects and beautify the City’s central public space.  The project is almost exclusively supported by external State and Federal funding and will provide a demonstration point for communities in the State of Louisiana to highlight sustainability and resilience best practices related to infrastructure design. 
  • Announcing the 2020 ICLEI USA Member Cohort Training Series: Each year, ICLEI USA convenes a number of cohort trainings for our member cities, towns, counties, and regional affiliates. These sessions are included with ICLEI membership at no additional cost and offer a facilitated opportunity to tackle a shared priority in a group setting. Each cohort brings together 10 or more local governments for regular web trainings accompanied by direct technical assistance, templates and resources, ongoing coordination in the online ICLEI Community platform, and a sequenced work plan.
  • Sneak Preview- $1.4 Million Grant Funds Becoming Available to NC Communities in January 2020: The North Carolina Clean Technologies Center is planning to announce a request for proposals (RFP) for grants totaling $1.4 million, in North Carolina.  You may be interested in the opportunity for electric vehicle chargers, with grant funds paying up to 80% of the cost of the project (20% min cost share required).  Applicants from within all 100 NC counties are eligible for EVSE projects.
  • USGBC Webinar: Getting started with LEED v4.1 for Cities and Communities– January 10th @ 2:00pm EST.
  • Security and Sustainability Forum Webinar: Energy Justice and Solving Climate by 2030 – January 29th @ 1:15pm EST. Join the Security and Sustainability Forum and Bard College in a sixty minute session about how innovative city and state policy will be critical to ensure justice in the economic transformation needed to solve the energy side of climate change by 2030.
  • Job Opportunities:
  • Have a great Holiday, SSDN!! See you all in the new year!

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