Dallas to Test-Run Sustainable Skylines Program

Dallas to Test-Run Sustainable Skylines Program

The City of Dallas has been picked as the first city in the country to team up with the Environmental Protection Agency and North Central Texas Council of Governments to test a new initiative aimed at bringing cleaner air to the metro area.

Sustainable Skylines is the name of the joint venture that involves completing several 3-year projects to reduce air emissions. The initiative is also expected to produce benefits to water and land quality. If the Dallas pilot is successful, the initiative could be used as a national model for other cities.

"Sustainable Skylines gives cities a flexible framework to achieve real results that improve air quality for their residents," said EPA Regional Administrator Richard E. Greene. "Dallas has been a leader among cities and now stands ready to be a model for the rest of the nation. We hope Dallas will be the first of many in Texas and beyond to make environmental sustainability an integral part of their city culture."

Under the Sustainable Skylines initiative, a city can choose to perform projects from seven categories: stationary sources/area sources, renewable energy/energy efficiency, central city livability, green buildings and developments, land-use transportation strategies, off-road emissions, and diesel emissions. Projects are expected to yield quantifiable benefits within three years. The City of Dallas has committed to completing seven environmentally beneficial projects.

"The City of Dallas is pleased to partner with EPA and the NCTCOG on our environmental sustainability programs," said Mayor Laura Miller. "Having our experts work collaboratively on complex environmental issues will lead to real and measurable environmental improvements. These improvements, specifically in air quality, will not only benefit the residents of Dallas, but other Cities who use this Sustainable Skylines project as a model for their own environmental initiatives."

Dallas was selected from a pool of multiple cities vying to field test the new initiative. Some of the projects the City of Dallas plans to conduct under Sustainable Skylines include:
  • Urban heat island and stormwater mitigation;
  • Replacing existing fleets of taxis and rental cars with ultra-low or zero-emitting vehicles;
  • Working with partners to construct highly energy-efficient, affordable homes;
  • Completing a reduction strategy for energy-related emissions; identifying specific projects that can be implemented, such as small-scale wind, solar, fuel cell, strategic shading and methane capture projects; improving the energy efficiency of city water pumping; and performing additional Energy Star benchmarking of public buildings and schools;
  • Conducting education outreach within the Dallas Independent School District and business community to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency;
  • Helping reduce air emissions from Dallas-area industries in conjunction with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality's existing Site Assistance Visit+ Program; and
  • Replacing small gasoline and diesel powered off-road equipment, such as lawn maintenance equipment and small utility vehicles, with electric powered equipment.
"The Council of Governments is very pleased to be a part of this partnership,” said Mike Eastland, Executive Director, North Central Texas Council of Governments. “We believe Sustainable Skylines will identify and implement several programs which will enhance the environment to the benefit of the citizens of Dallas and this region and that will be readily transferable to other environmentally conscious jurisdictions and businesses."

To learn more about the Dallas Sustainable Skylines initiative and activities, please visit the EPA Region 6 website.