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Melba C. Gasque

Miami-Dade County and its Regional Climate Compact partners win technical assistance from US Department of Energy

MIAMI (October 01, 2015)

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) this month selected Miami-Dade County and its Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact partners to share in up to $800,000 in technical assistance awarded nationwide to 10 Climate Action Champions. The Compact was chosen as one of 16 White House Climate Action Champions last year in a nationwide competition.

The technical assistance provided by the DOE helps support the use of Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds (QECBs) in the Compact region. QECBs are a type of bond that allows states and local governments to finance energy efficiency and renewable energy projects at below-market rates. The federal government partly subsidizes the interest payments on the bonds issued by local governments, lowering the effective cost of the borrowing.

Projects eligible QECB funding include energy efficiency upgrades in public buildings, “green community programs” addressing energy efficiency or renewable energy efforts among a broad segment of the public (such as loan programs), mass transportation projects which will reduce emissions, and other energy-related programs.

The federal government noted the “decisive action to cut carbon pollution and build resilience” already undertaken by the four Compact counties— Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach, and Monroe—when the Compact was selected for the White House Climate Action Champions initiative last year. Since its establishment in 2009, the Compact has produced a series of technical planning documents providing a common framework for planning, including a unified sea-level rise projection; published a five-year Regional Climate Action Plan (RCAP),  and undertaken significant efforts to implement its 110 recommendations; and held annual summits reaching hundreds of local and regional leaders.

In their Climate Action Champions application, the Compact counties reaffirmed individual county-level greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and identified region-wide goals of 10 percent reductions by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050.

Learn more about Miami-Dade County’s sustainability efforts.