Georgia’s Environmental Issues. Georgia’s record drought Growing population Rising energy prices Air quality concerns Land degradation Environmental concerns can lessen the appeal of Georgia to business and industry. Current Activities by State of Georgia. Climate Change Specific:
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Georgia’s Environmental Issues • Georgia’s record drought • Growing population • Rising energy prices • Air quality concerns • Land degradation • Environmental concerns can lessen the appeal of Georgia to business and industry
Current Activities by State of Georgia Climate Change Specific: • Member of Climate Registry • Green Retreat (P2AD of DNR) • Carbon Sequestration Inventory completed by Forestry Commission • Mayors Climate Protection Agreement signed by 8 Georgia mayors • American College and University Presidents Climate Challenge signed by 11 Georgia college presidents • Georgia updating Greenhouse Gas inventory Not Specific to Climate Change, but could be categorized as such: • Energy Innovation Center (home of One Stop Shop for Bio Fuel Projects) • Governor’s Executive Orders (i.e. flex fuel vehicle purchases) • Energy Optimization Program • Weatherization Program • State Water Plan • Southeastern Energy Efficiency Potential Study • Wind Working Group – Offshore Wind Study and Meetings with MMS Offshore Minerals Management • Land Conservation Program • Economic development recruitment of solar and bio fuel companies • E85 Grant Program • Georgia Bio Energy Cooridor Campaign • Conserve Georgia Campaign • Governor’s Energy Challenge
Why Conserve Georgia’s Energy? Rising energy costs • Energy costs have risen steadily since 1970s • Global demand increasing; global supply of traditional energy sources decreasing • Conservation is the “least-cost” option for energy efficiency • Energy conservation improves air quality
December 2007 March 2006 April 2008 Why Conserve Georgia’s Water? Georgia’s most drought-stricken areas depend mostly on rainfall for water supply. Water Conservation • Can save water resources for future generations • Can protect water quality and the environment • Can expand the life of existing supplies
Why Conserve Georgia’s Land? • Georgia’s growth and development consumes land • Less than one-percent of Georgia land accessible to public • Agricultural land declining • Vital watersheds protections disappearing • Must preserve state’s treasured historic and scenic sites
Georgia’s primary resource for information, education and goal setting, Conserve Georgia markets the state’s programs that work to increase citizen, business, industry and local government’s stewardship of the state’s natural resources.
Conserve GeorgiaOur Mission • Coordinated by the Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority (GEFA), Conserve Georgia is an umbrella organization that markets state water, land and energy conservation programs • Georgia has more than 20 different conservation programs operated by at least nine state agencies • ‘One-stop’ location for land, water and energy conservation resources • Give Georgians easy access to a broad spectrum of conservation information • Reinforce Georgia’s culture of conservation and incorporate it into daily life • Make Georgia the leader in conservation awareness and action
Examples of Water Conservation Programs • Conserve Water GeorgiaWater conservation tips and ways to save water at home. • Water Resources ToolkitWater management resources for local government • WaterFirstA voluntary partnership for wise water management and protection. • GEFA Water and Sewer Financing ProgramsLoan programs for water, sewer and solid waste infrastructure projects.
Examples of Land Conservation Initiatives • Georgia Land Conservation ProgramPermanent conservation of land through the acquisition of conservation easements and fee-simple ownership. • Georgia Main Street ProgramHelps Georgia cities and neighborhoods develop commercial areas. • Sustainable Community Forestry ProgramSupplies valuable resources community leaders need to develop and maintain a community tree care program. • Urban Lands ProgramImproves and protects Georgia’s urban soil and water resources through best management practices (BMP’s)
Examples of Energy Initiatives • The Governor’s Energy ChallengeLinks and other information to help Georgians implement the Governor’s energy reduction goals. • State Utilities ProgramEnergy purchasing and energy management assistance for state agencies. • State Energy ProgramFinancial assistance and technical support for energy programs. • Georgia Quality Growth PartnershipTools to transform the way we define, create and sustain high quality Georgia communities.
Governor’s Energy Challenge Governor Sonny Perdue committed to reduce energy consumption per square foot in state facilities 15 percent below FY2007 levels by 2020. Governor also challenges Georgia’s citizens, businesses and local governments to match the state's effort
Governor’s Energy Challenge • State must lead by example • Aggressively implement and adopt energy efficient practices • Help protect Georgia’s energy sources for future generations • All must work together • State & local governments • Business & industry • Individuals
Governor’s Energy Challenge Energy Innovation Center • Georgia becoming recognized alternative energy and fuels leader • Goal is reducing Georgia's dependence on traditional energy sources, support the local economy and improve the environment • Produce 15 percent of the state’s transportation fuels by 2020 from locally produced bio or alternative fuels • Offer access to university research, development resources and potential funding sources via research grants and other funding opportunities • Form partnerships by matching them with companies, feedstock producers or government agencies that can deliver benefits and resources to the client
What’s Next? • Multi million dollar public relations campaign • Public-Private 501c3 • Education/Training Program for local government and elected officials • Children’s website • College tour • Listening Sessions • Awards • State Energy Strategy 2.0 • www.conservegeorgia.com