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Pittsburgh is one of 25 cities to receive Bloomberg Philanthropies’ support to turbocharge local climate action and create more prosperous communities 

PITTSBURGH – Today, Mayor Gainey announced Pittsburgh was selected by Bloomberg Philanthropies as one of 25 U.S. cities to join Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities. Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities is a three-year initiative designed to leverage historic levels of federal funding to incubate and implement transformative local solutions to build low-carbon, resilient, and economically thriving communities. Building on the longtime leadership of U.S. cities to confront the overlapping crises of climate change and racial wealth inequity, the $200 million Bloomberg Philanthropies initiative will provide deep support to selected cities to pursue transformative solutions in the buildings and transportation sectors through partnerships with PolicyLink, Bloomberg Center for Public Innovation at Johns Hopkins University, and Natural Resources Defense Council

By participating in Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities, Pittsburgh will receive a Bloomberg Philanthropies-funded innovation team (i-team) with up to three dedicated staff with expertise in data analysis, insight development, human-centered design, systems thinking, and project management to bolster city capacity in driving progress on climate mitigation and promoting equitable outcomes. The city will also receive multi-year, in-depth, customized policy and technical assistance in collaboration with community-based organizations to mobilize public, private, and philanthropic investments. 

“It’s an honor to be selected as one of Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities. I’m excited to see what a dedicated partnership like this can come up with for future projects to help Pittsburgh move forward into an environmentally conscious, and energy efficient city for its residents,” said Mayor Ed Gainey.   

Pittsburgh was chosen by Bloomberg Philanthropies for Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities based on its leadership and ambition to build resilient, equitable communities. Despite facing significant vulnerabilities like landslides, flooding, and microbursts the city has persisted in advancing community prosperity and economic development amid the climate crisis. Mayor Gainey has continued and accelerated ongoing efforts to electrify the City’s vehicle fleet, utilize the city’s purchasing power as a large energy consumer to spur the development of renewable energy sources in our region, and has pushed developers to adhere to high standards for energy efficiency in new construction. 

With over $400 billion in federal funding available to local governments through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act, Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities aims to help cities access and implement the historic funding for critical local projects, especially in disadvantaged communities historically overburdened by pollution. This includes a grant from the Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service’s Urban and Community Forestry. We used the funds in partnership with Pittsburgh Canopy Alliance a coalition of about 20 environmental organizations working to increase the tree canopy in Allegheny County. By increasing the canopies of Pittsburgh tree count, the build-up of CO2 can decrease.  Anticipated solutions implemented through the Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities could include developing affordable, energy-efficient housing, investing in electric vehicles and infrastructure, accelerating the transition, and expanding access to clean energy, among others.  

“It’s wonderful to see a partnership like this form,” Said Flore Marion Assistant Director of Sustainability and Resilience, “we have had an increasing amount of extreme weather events in different ways than most Pittsburgh residents are used to, a grant like this ensures we can help out more and more of our residents deal with those changes.” 

Bloomberg American Sustainable Cities is the newest Bloomberg Philanthropies initiative to support local climate action in the United States. In 2019, Bloomberg Philanthropies launched the American Cities Climate Challenge to provide resources and support to 25 of the largest U.S. cities to scale proven high-impact urban climate solutions in the buildings and transportation sectors. With Bloomberg Philanthropies’ support, the 25 Climate Challenge cities passed 54 major buildings, energy, and transportation policies and launched 71 new climate programs and initiatives, which are projected to reduce 74 million metric tons of carbon emissions through 2030. In 2022, Bloomberg Philanthropies galvanized a consortium of nonprofit and expert groups to establish the Local Infrastructure Hub, a national program providing more than 1,200 municipalities with pro-bono expertise to navigate historic funding opportunities made available through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act, develop competitive grant applications, and bring investment home to address essential infrastructure needs. To date, participating municipalities have already been awarded more than $1 billion in federal funding.  



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Olga George
Press Secretary
Mayor's Office