Mayor Joseph P. Ganim
For Immediate Release For More Information:
June 24, 2016 Av Harris (203) 814-799
Mayor Ganim Wins National Recognition for Environmental Sustainability Efforts for Thermal Loop Project in Bridgeport
City of Bridgeport Wins $10,000 Grant from the US Conference of Mayors for Project Providing Climate-Friendly Heating to Downtown
Indianapolis, IN – Mayor Joe Ganim today accepted a $10,000 grant awarded to the city of Bridgeport from the US Conference of Mayors for the Thermal Loop project which provides environmentally sustainable heating to downtown Bridgeport. Bridgeport won the award today as part of the annual meeting of the US Conference of Mayors in Indianapolis. The award was officially entitled the “2016 Mayors’ Climate Protection Awards, and Bridgeport won honorable mention in the large city category for the Thermal Loop project. The winner in this category was Richmond, VA mayor Dwight P. Jones for the city’s RVA Green Sustainability and Energy Management Program. The Thermal Loop project was designed in partnership with NuPower Thermal, LLC, and has developed a low-temperature thermal heating district to serve the downtown Bridgeport area and the University of Bridgeport. This system utilizes waste heat from the Wheelabrator waste-to-energy plant as well as recently-installed fuel cells to create hot water for space heating.
“This award is a great honor for our city to be recognized nationwide for environmental conservation efforts,” said Mayor Ganim. “Climate represents a significant risk to cities like Bridgeport that are situation in coastal areas. We must use all of our creativity and resources – both in the public sector and in partnership with business – to reverse the effects of carbon emissions and rising sea levels. This Thermal Loop Project is a perfect example of turning waste into a sustainable and affordable way to provide heat to an entire area of a city. This is definitely a model that cities all over the United States can replicate.”
The thermal loop project not only reduces the carbon footprint of the buildings in its heating district, but also makes these buildings less reliant on carbon fuels and more energy efficient. This change delivers significant cost savings for residents and business owners to have heat. This program also represents a tremendous economic investment, with approximately $45 million in direct and indirect economic benefits, new tax revenue, and the creation of many high-paying construction jobs.
The carbon footprint of every building connected to the thermal heating district is expected to decline by 80 %. Given that the downtown businesses and homes represent a large portion of Bridgeport’s overall carbon footprint, a significant increase in the efficiency of these buildings means a significant decrease in the city’s carbon footprint. Ultimately, less carbon emissions will have positive effects on the health and well-being of the community, especially children.
The United Nations Environmental Program has recognized Bridgeport’s Thermal Loop Project as one of the most cost-effective solutions to the problem of climate change.