New program encourages sustainability in Great Lakes cities

A new regional initiative encourages green energy use, economic development and water resource protection in more than 70 Great Lakes cities.

The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative, a bi-national network of mayors promoting the region’s restoration, recently launched the Green Cities Transforming Towards Sustainability program.

The program is supposed to protect water and coastal areas and promote low-carbon energy generation and green land use and building design. Officials hope green economic development stimulates local economies.

“Our cities have enormous investment and purchasing power that can be deployed to support the development of environmental technologies and training for green jobs,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said in a news release.

The Joyce Foundation, a regional non-profit organization, sponsors this year’s theme of reducing stormwater runoff. Several Great Lakes cities already have comprehensive stormwater programs in place.

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