Mike Bloomberg Names Charlotte as Winner in Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge
North Carolina city added as nineteenth of twenty cities to be awarded resources and technical support to help achieve their ambitious climate goals
The Climate Challenge is part of the more than $200 million Bloomberg American Cities Initiative designed to help cities achieve critical near-term goals
CHARLOTTE, NC – Today, UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Climate Action Michael R. Bloomberg joined Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles at the UNC Charlotte Center City Garden to announce Charlotte as the nineteenth winning city in Bloomberg’s American Cities Climate Challenge. Charlotte joins eighteen other winners announced this year: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Honolulu, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Portland, Saint Paul, San Diego, San Jose, Seattle, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C.
Launched in June, the American Cities Climate Challenge is a $70 million-dollar program that will accelerate efforts in 20 winning cities to tackle climate change and promote a sustainable future for residents. Through the Climate Challenge – which is part of Bloomberg’s American Cities Initiative – Charlotte is accepted into a two-year acceleration program that will provides powerful new resources and access to cutting-edge support to help meet or beat its near-term carbon reduction goals.
Alongside Mayor Lyles, Bloomberg highlighted Charlotte’s innovative and ambitious climate action plan for the Challenge, which is designed to reduce air pollution and citywide emissions from the transportation and buildings sectors – two areas that are on average responsible for 80% total of all citywide emissions and over which mayors have significant authority. Bloomberg recognized Mayor Lyles’ commitment to ambitious climate action and securing a cleaner, safer, and healthier environment for Charlotte residents.
“With Washington asleep at the wheel, cities like Charlotte are leading the way in the fight against climate change,” said Bloomberg. “Charlotte took on our Climate Challenge with an ambitious plan to tackle emissions from their buildings and transportation network, and we’re glad to support Mayor Lyles and her team as they work to build a healthier and stronger future.”
“Charlotte has always been a city of reinvention and ambition,” Mayor Lyles said. “Working toward a sustainable and resilient community will help create economic opportunity for everyone through affordable housing, accessible transportation and a clean-energy workforce.”
Winning cities of the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge will be provided robust technical assistance and a support package to help them achieve their carbon reduction goals. These resources include a philanthropy-funded team member to facilitate the development and passage of high impact policies, training for senior leadership to assist with implementation of their proposed climate plans, and citizen engagement support to maximize community buy-in.
Cities will work with Bloomberg Philanthropies and partners to implement their specific climate plans. Charlotte will use the support from the Climate Challenge to upgrade municipal fleets to electric vehicles and increase community-wide access to public transit by an average of 41%. Charlotte also plans to implement policy shifts, modernizing the development ordinance to address sprawl, and creating new financing programs for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.
The Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge builds on the America’s Pledge initiative, which aims to keep the U.S. in the Paris Agreement, and underscores Mike Bloomberg’s dedication to climate action investments that translate city commitments into tangible climate achievements.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies works in 480 cities in more than 120 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s charitable activities, including his foundation and his personal giving. In 2017, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $702 million. For more information, please visit www.bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.
About the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge
Recognizing that cities account for more than 70% of global carbon emissions, the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge was formed with an investment of $70 million to enhance the work already being done by mayors across the U.S. and to support cities in the fight against climate change. The Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge aims to go beyond the theoretical and scale up high-impact urban climate solutions that are already proven to succeed – specifically, from the buildings and transportation sectors. World-class partners for the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge will be led by the Natural Resources Defense Council and Delivery Associates. The Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge is part of Mike Bloomberg’s American Cities Initiative, a suite of more than $200 million in investments to strengthen city halls and advance critical policies.
Contact: Lee Cochran