DATE: February 7, 2014
MEDIA CONTACT: Jason Liechty, Environmental Projects Coordinator,
Broward County Natural Resources Planning and Management Division
BROWARD COUNTY, Fla. – Broward County will aim to reduce energy use in County buildings by 20 percent by 2020 and use 20 percent renewable energy in its operations under a resolution adopted by the Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday.
The resolution also endorsed President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, released last summer, which lays out a program of federal actions to reduce carbon emissions and adapt to a changing climate; expressed the Board’s interest in incorporating renewable energy projects in County facilities; and reaffirms support for full implementation of the County’s online ePermits system, which saves paper and reduces vehicle trips associated with the submission of building and other environmental permits.
The County’s goals mirror the goals announced by the Obama Administration for the federal government: reducing building energy use by 20 percent and using 20 percent renewable energy for government operations.
The goal to reduce building energy use commits the County to the President’s Better Building Challenge, a national initiative promoted by the U.S. Department of Energy, which calls for making buildings 2.5 percent more efficient each year through 2020, reducing energy use by 20 percent.
Commissioner Kristin Jacobs, who sponsored the measure, said, “With this resolution, the County maintains its national leadership on energy and climate issues. Future infrastructure funding from the federal government will likely favor local governments like Broward which are taking strong steps to reduce energy use and prepare for climate impacts. I look forward to Broward County achieving these new goals and establishing even stronger ones in the future.”
The County has long recognized the importance of a dual approach to meet the challenges of climate change and sea level rise, not only preparing for the expected impacts caused by historic carbon emissions, but also reducing future emissions to help limit additional climate change and severe weather impacts.
Investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency also improve the resiliency of the electrical grid to extreme weather and high demand, hedge against fluctuations in the price of fossil fuels, and promote the green energy sector.