New York, N.Y. -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that Tompkins County, New York has been awarded a $375,450 Climate Showcase Community grant for a project aimed at reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improving human health. The county will use information from the EcoVillage at Ithaca— a Tompkins County community that uses 40% fewer resources than the typical community of its size— to help construct three new energy-efficient residential projects.
“Tompkins County has shown itself to be a leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said EPA Regional Administrator Judith Enck. “This ambitious project will become a model for communities across the country that want to reduce their residents’ fuel costs and lessen their impact on the environment.”
Under their plan, Tompkins County will create new model zoning and building codes which will be applied to new residential projects in three different settings — hamlet, village, and urban. After construction, the County will monitor each project for GHG reductions, and will disseminate lessons learned to planners, developers, local government and others. Within the three year project period, it is expected that 72 new residential units will be constructed, with each achieving an 80% reduction in GHG emissions over current energy code standards.
Tompkins County is one of only 19 communities nationwide receiving funds in this round of grants under the Climate Showcase program.