San Jose has received platinum LEED certification in a pilot program for green cities offered by the U.S. Green Building Council, council officials said.
LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is a distinction awarded to cities that reduce carbon emissions, ensure clean air and water and focus on “green” buildings and sustainable development.
The distinction recognizes three specific San Jose projects: the city’s Zero Waste Strategic Plan, the city’s new transit metric, Vehicle Miles Traveled, and Climate Smart San Jose, a plan to reduce air pollution and save water among other healthy aims.
In implementing these projects, the agency said San Jose officials proactively sought community input by sharing information in English, Spanish and Vietnamese.
Mayor Sam Liccardo thanked the council for recognizing San Jose’s “steadfast” commitment to environmental health by awarding it the highest rank of LEED certification.
“While national leadership continues to abdicate its environmental responsibilities, San Jose will persist in its efforts to fight climate change and build a more sustainable community,” he said in a statement.
The certification will give San Jose access to Arc software, which tracks data about sustainability and environmental health in a central platform.
San Jose is the first city in California to receive the certification and will receive a grant from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation along with five other cities in the United States.
City officials did not disclose the grant’s value but said the funds will go toward sustainability efforts. Denver, Colorado; Phoenix, Arizona; Atlanta, Georgia; Washington, D.C.; and Chicago, Illinois are also grant recipients.
By Supriya Yelimeli