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Washington, DC has been named the first LEED for Cities Platinum city in the world. Mayor Muriel Bowser was presented this honor by Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO of the U.S. Green Building Council, at an event on the steps of Dunbar High School – the highest rated LEED-certified school in the United States.
“It is in the best interest of Washington, DC’s safety, economy, and future to take sustainability and resiliency seriously, and as the nation’s capital, we have a special obligation to lead the way on environmental issues,” said Mayor Bowser. “We are proud to be recognized as the world’s first LEED Platinum city. Our commitment to these issues will not yield, and we look forward to continuing to build a greener, more resilient, and more sustainable DC.”
LEED for Cities was launched last year and enables cities to measure and communicate performance, focusing on outcomes from ongoing sustainability efforts across an array of metrics, including energy, water, waste, transportation, and human experience (which includes education, prosperity, equity and health & safety). LEED for Cities projects benchmark and track performance using Arc, a state-of-the-art digital platform that uses data to provide greater transparency into sustainability efforts and helps cities make more informed decisions.
As the District looks to achieve the goals of its Sustainable D.C. Plan and the targets of the Paris Climate Accord, tracking and improving upon the city’s progress is essential.
The Bowser Administration also announced that Brookland Middle School has achieved LEED Platinum certification by the USGBC. The school was awarded 85 out of a possible 109 points, making Brookland Middle School the third D.C. Public Schools (DCPS) project to achieve Platinum certification and the 19th LEED certified DCPS facility.
Throughout the Bowser Administration, Washington, D.C. has served as a leading city on issues of sustainability. Over the past two and a half years, the administration has released Climate Ready D.C., entered into one of the largest municipal onsite solar projects in the U.S., completed the largest wind power purchase agreement deal of its kind ever entered into by an American city, launched Sustainable D.C. 2.0, and, most recently, signed a mayor’s order pledging to uphold the commitments in the Paris Climate Accord.
At the moment, 65 percent of D.C. neighborhoods are walkable, 58 percent of commuter trips are by bike, walking, or public transit, the D.C. government is 100 percent powered by renewable energy and D.C. is on track to derive at least one-half of the entire city’s electricity from renewable resources by 2032.