Southface Sustainable Atlanta Roundtable
Southface Sustainable Atlanta Roundtable

The Southface Sustainable Atlanta Roundtable (southface.org/sart) convenes once a month to discuss the region’s current environmental issues – from water to energy, urban planning to policy and much more. Members of the audience are encouraged to ask questions, make comments, network and learn about Atlanta’s current and future opportunities for sustainable development. The next meetings are July 12 and Aug. 2 from 7:30 to 9 a.m. at All Saints Episcopal Church – Ellis Hall, 634 West Peachtree St.

The U.S. Department of Energy has recognized Atlanta for its leadership in the first year of the Better Buildings Challenge. Launched by President Obama in December 2011, the Better Buildings Challenge is a national leadership initiative that calls on chief executive officers, university presidents, and state and local leaders to reduce the energy used across their building portfolios by 20 percent or more by 2020. The Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge (atlantabbc.com) beat its first year’s goal of 2 million square feet, with over 78 buildings at more than 50,000,000 square feet of building space committed to making sustainability improvements in Downtown Atlanta. On average, Better Buildings Challenge partners reduced their energy intensity by 2.5 percent in the first year of the initiative, putting them on track to meet the President’s goal by 2020.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that it plans to award four communities in Georgia with brownfield grants for new investments to provide communities with funding necessary to clean and redevelop contaminated properties, boost local economies and create jobs while protecting human health. Atlanta brownfield grant recipients include the City of Atlanta ($200,00 assessment grant for hazardous substances and $200,000 assessment grant for petroleum) and Invest Atlanta ($600,00 cleanup grant for hazardous substances).