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    City Rising 6: How Orlando is Reimagining its City’s Reputation with Chris Castro

    On this episode of City Rising, we continue the conversation about how city government is taking the lead on climate action. Our special guest, Chris Castro is the City of Orlando’s Director of Sustainability & Resilience. Tune into this episode to find out:

    • How Orlando is trying to turn around its reputation as a destination to disruptor
    • The largest carbon emitters in Orlando
    • Ways Orlando works with other cities, including Philadelphia, to learn best practices
    • Where Orlando is investing “green bonds” to make the biggest impact
    • The key stakeholders helping to accelerate Orlando’s sustainable mission

    CITY RISING EPISODE 6: How Orlando is Reimagining its City’s Reputation with Chris Castro

    You can listen to the episode by searching for City Rising or clicking any of the links below. Like the episode? Leave us a review and subscribe on Apple PodcastsGoogleSpotify, TuneIn or wherever you listen to podcasts.

    EPISODE Six OF CITY RISING – Transcribed

    Julie Hancher:                     Welcome to city rising, a podcast that compares how different cities are working towards climate solutions. I’m Julie Hancher, Co founder and editor with Green Philly,

    Brady Halligan:                   and I’m Brady Halligan, the director of strategy and business development with the green program. Our goal is to chat with diverse stakeholders about our changing environment on how it connects people planet and creates future opportunities.

    Julie Hancher:                     Green Philly as a website that helps you live a more sustainable lifestyle by making sustainability simple, accessible, and fun. Find recycling tips, news about local change makers and upcoming events by visiting www. Dot Green blog.com.

    Brady Halligan:                   Thank you for tuning in. I’m your city rising cohost, Brady Halligan. This is part two of the episode where we engage city government sustainability leaders. Today we will have Chris Castro, the director of sustainability for the city of Orlando. If you have not listened to, part one of this episode with Christine Nap, the director of sustainability for the city of Philadelphia. You will definitely want to listen to that. First is it really sets the stage today. I’m very excited to have a true rising and proven leader in sustainability. A friend from Florida, Chris Castro. Chris, welcome. Thanks for joining us today.

    Chris Castro:                        Thank you for having me. Excited to be here on, on this podcast.

    Brady Halligan:                   Fantastic. So Chris, I’ve had the pleasure of knowing you for a little over eight years now. I think you know, while you were getting ideas off the ground through University of central Florida and we at the same time, we’re getting the green program off the ground up here in the northeast at Rutgers. And since then you’ve been a pretty busy guy. So could you do me a solid and, and just introduce yourself to the audience. Let us know a little bit maybe about your journey and into how you lead to your current role in what you’re doing.

    Chris Castro:                        Yeah, I’d be happy to. Again, my name is Chris Castro and over the last 12 years or so, I’ve been heavily engaged in community engagement as well as kind of a lot of people have called me, kind of the serial social entrepreneur who has started a number of different nonprofits and social enterprise companies that really focus on how we accelerate the transition to a smart, resilient and sustainable future. So over the years as, as you mentioned, that kind of started out with nonprofit organization ideas for us which had this global scope on how we advanced the UN sustainable development goals and really empower young people at universities, schools and those in communities around the world to really take local action and take kind of their own destiny in their hands. And that’s kind of evolved into many different things that I’ve been involved in. Whether it’s fleet farming, which is an incredible urban farming program that we started here in Orlando and now scaling to other communities as well as starting a company called citizen energy.

    Chris Castro:                        That is a clean energy consulting firm now operating in the Washington dc Metro area and really supporting commercial and multifamily buildings through the acceleration of energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions. About four and a half years ago and before kind of dropping things and moving to DC to keep running that company, I was pulled in here to the mayor’s office, the city of Orlando, and was offered an incredible opportunity to help craft kind of the ecosystem of policies and programs that drive clean energy in the city of Orlando. And that was kind of my main focus and uh, about two and a half years ago was promoted into the director of sustainability role and currently kind of help advise as mayor, senior advisor on all things environmental and sustainability and recently kind of creeped into the smart city space as well. So it’s been pretty incredible journey over the last 12 years and I’m really looking forward to what’s next.

    Brady Halligan:                   Yeah, that’s awesome. Chris, and I must say it says as watching as from a distance and engaging with, with different people in different ways within your organizations. You know, it’s, it’s an amazing trajectory you’ve had from, from local to global trajectory, global organizations starting organizations, but then you have a really unique way to bring it back down to the local and focus in on your home, focusing on the key areas and I just find it incredible that has led you back to director of sustainability, the city, Orlando, your home. They did a really good job trying to keep you there and do some good work. So it’s amazing.

    Chris Castro:                        Full spectrum, right? Full Circle. You’re absolutely right. It’s, it’s been quite interesting to start here as local, as University of central Florida scale to as high as the United Nations level in terms of our scope and then looking back down here in the city government quite the journey and certainly a lot more to come.

    Brady Halligan:                   Absolutely. So with that, let, let me, let me rock, uh, first question to you. So what role do cities and specifically city government play in combat combating climate change? You know, what are you seeing as your role in the city’s role in this collective effort?

    Chris Castro:                        Well, you know, it’s interesting because we’re seeing an incredible transformation in cities all around the world. Cities are essentially being challenged with some really complex issues and as we, as we consume more of the finite resources around clean water, as we scale more people and of course have problems with traffic and congestion and air pollution as well as make more waste in general. We are having to rethink how cities are going to operate and thrive within the 21st century. And I think that that’s a big kind of the big focus of why Mayor Dyer 10 years ago launched this effort around sustainability. It was realized that cities have traditionally had impacts on public health. Of course the climate on the economy and in order for us to thrive in the 21st and attract the creative class and attract the next generation of businesses to our city and, and ultimately make this the best place to live, work, learn and play.

    Chris Castro:                        We need to integrate sustainability and climate action. And almost everything that we do here in Orlando. We focus on the triple bottom line of people, planet and prosperity. And we see sustainability as an economic development driver, but also more importantly ways in which we can enhance quality of life, improve public health for those who live and work here, accelerate new green economies and high wage job creation specifically in the clean tech space and ultimately be a protector of natural resources and of course the looming issue of climate change being addressed. So that’s kind of the holistic perspective that we have when, when I’m talking about leading sustainability efforts in Orlando, very much looks at, you know, a very diverse approach to a multipronged approach to how we solve the very critical challenges in the urban space. Absolutely.

    Brady Halligan:                   And it’s, it’s interesting when you look through the lens of sustainability, trying to solve these complex issues, it’s involved in everything. And you know what? I have always been drawn to sustainability because it is so intertwined with everything in the ecosys urban ecosystem and just how the world operates. You know, you can put a positive spin on things because you’re looking for opportunity, not focusing in on the challenge and the negative aspects of what’s going on. It’s, it’s a really nice switch and I’ve always admired that about you as well as you know, you’ve been very optimistic about, you know, we can do this, we can, you know, figure out these new strategies and, and businesses and things like that. So you know, you’re speaking to the choir here. It’s amazing. But on that, switch gears a little bit, let’s bring it back down to your home and what you’re working on. So what would you say is unique about Orlando Strategy to, to tackle some of these challenges you’re mentioning and initiating a successful greenwork strategy. Is it public private partnerships? Is it location, community support, technology capital? You know, every city’s different, but what’s happening down there that you’re seeing is that unique?

    Chris Castro:                        Orlando, a lot often people think of Orlando globally as this kind of hub for entertainment and theme park attractions and what we often say is, you don’t know the half of it. In fact, there’s an entire economic development slogan that says Orlando, you don’t know the half of it because we’ve been trying to kind of reimagine, especially for others outside of our city what we’re made of. Orlando is the most visited destination in the Americas, not just states, but North America, South America, Central America. Last year we welcome Stephanie, 2 million visitors to our city and one of the challenges that makes I think the lander unique is that in addition to us trying to sustain our current economy, but those who live work, learn and play here, we’re also needing to essentially figuring out how to mitigate the impacts that are tourist population has our city. Of course, when you come to, you know, a destination tourism destination, you’re not necessarily thinking and the ability in conservation, right?

    Chris Castro:                        So when you’re in your hotel room, often people are bumping down that AC as close as they can to get comfortable taking longer showers than usual. You’re probably producing about a ton of waste being here in Orlando for about a week or so on average, and so we have. And then you get to go home of course, right? And we deal with all of the waste products and the use of the natural resources that allow you to have this wonderful time in Orlando that both tend to experience. And so we’re having to think through what that looks like. One thing I will say is that Orlando is culture around collaboration and partnerships is unparalleled. I haven’t seen another community that I’ve visited or engaged with. It has the same level of partnership interest and kind of that being a critical solution for us. We have strong partnerships with academia.

    Chris Castro:                        I worked very closely with four, five different academic institutions, of course, local, state and federal governments, strong collaboration there. And then of course in the industry, private sector, the business chambers, the nonprofits and civil society groups. We have a very strong culture of how we share resources and share membership and at the end of the day share our experiences here in Orlando to ensure that we’re sustaining our city moving forward into the future. And I think that that, that is something that definitely sets us apart. Freezer critical. We have several public private partnerships, some in the works and some that are established that have allowed us to essentially add to that our culture of sustainability. One of those is a new downtown UCF and Valencia college campuses that are moving to 68-Acre infill development in our downtown core that’s going to be transformative.

    Chris Castro:                        It goes live actually next fall, building skills in the ground now and that those facilities are being built and we’re going to have an additional nine to 10,000 more students come to our downtown core that will drive economic growth and job creation here within our city. And, and that’s critical. That all happened because of a public private partnership between developers, city and academic institutions. Really seeing the benefit of bringing that type of development to a downtown. So, so I think that that really, you know, those are a couple of things that, that provide some new challenges but also opportunities with Orlando being one of the fastest growing cities in North America, period. We’d have to really start to look at creative ways to achieve these goals and then those or something.

    Brady Halligan:                   And now a quick word from one of our sponsors based in Philadelphia, the Green Program is an award winning experiential education program for emerging leaders in sustainable development and climate action with university accredited programs and locations like Iceland, Japan and Peru. The green program, emerging talent with companies and organizations that are committed to advancing the 17 United Nations sustainable development goals. Check out the experiences and learn how to hire TGP alumni at thegreenprogram.com. I definitely want to touch on some of that collaboration a little later, but I want to hone in a little bit on and you mentioned, you know, seven focus areas and you know, every city that I’ve learned that, that has a green marks initiative and it really has an office of sustainability. You know, they, they narrow it down to some, some key areas and there are similar ones between Philadelphia and Orlando. Just labeling it a little different, you know the terminology.

    Brady Halligan:                   But you know, you’re, you’re trying to hit all the complex issues and put them under themes. And you know, one of the main ones is energy and green buildings. You know, cities are trying to figure out how do we lessen the impact of our buildings. Right. So you know, I do know that Orlando, like, like Philadelphia is a part of the city energy project. Yeah. It’s a national initiative to create healthier, more prosperous American cities by improving the energy efficiency of large buildings. So I did see some, some unique things that, that you’re doing in your office in Atlanta, the pace program and the building energy and water efficiency strategy, which, which seems to be unique to the Orlando Strategy. So could you maybe touch a little bit on what those strategies are and you know what’s happening?

    Chris Castro:                        Yeah, I’d be, I’d be happy to. You know, you mentioned that buildings happened to be a huge challenge for most cities around the world and I’ll tell you it’s often the largest contributor through carbon emissions in the cities around the world happened to be the built environment here in Orlando. Seventy two percent. Our greenhouse gas emissions are associated with buildings are wild horse hotel and hospitality and entertainment are big parts of that, but commercial, industrial, multifamily and single family residential markets. These are significant contributors to climate pollutants and what we’ve felt and still feel today is that the greatest, most cost effective thing that we can be doing to mitigate carbon emissions is to focus on driving energy efficiency within our buildings and of course switching our fuel for electricity generation towards cleaner sources. So back in 2014. In fact, one of the reasons why I hired by the city of Orlando was to administer the city energy project.

    Chris Castro:                        I came in as a city or in the mayor’s office, billed, as I mentioned before, this ecosystem of policies and programs and initiatives that dramatically increased energy efficiency throughout the built environment of focusing on the largest buildings because they happen to be based on square footage. The largest contributors. Right? So when I. When I sat back and looked at this, first and foremost, I knew that we couldn’t do this alone. That there are cities across this country who have implemented, including Philadelphia, who have implemented some incredible best practice strategies to really accelerate that energy efficiency and we gleaned from these cities. I literally had meetings with over 30 different municipalities from San Francisco to New York, to Philly, to Boston, Chicago, Boston, Atlanta, you name it, up and down, all coast to coast, and the whole goal in the beginning of this was to figure out what are those strategies that you are seeing move the needle the most and where are the areas that are you seeing now essentially a gap for you to fill, and I came back and identified about 12 policies and programs that we felt were unique to Orlando and had the greatest opportunity for impact and those included things like first and foremost, focusing on the municipal energy efficiency efforts.

    Chris Castro:                        We are moving forward with passing a 17 point $5 million dollar green bond. This is incredibly unique to Orlando. That bond essentially has been focused on investing in existing buildings. People can improve their energy efficiency dramatically. We and we put all of our portfolio about 500 buildings that the city owns and operates into the energy star portfolio manager tool. With that tool, it helped us identify the buildings that had the highest energy use intensity and we chose the bottom 10 percent. We chose 55 facilities and said, okay, based on the energy Ashrae Level two energy audits we’ve done, these are the energy conservation measures we need to invest in that will have the greatest bang for the buck and will allow us to recapture money from those savings to pay off the bond. Right, so we met is going after an Esco to front the money and fear the savings over much longer term than the return on investment.

    Chris Castro:                        We decided to use our low cost of capital because we have great bond rating if you to get that money and make those investments ourselves and control our destiny. We have now a retrofitted those 55 buildings with high efficiency leds, both interior and exterior. We’ve upgraded all of the building automation and control systems for those, so we’re seeing in real time how these facilities are operating energy and water and we started to improve other hvac and roofing renovations and things of that nature to day. That portfolio of buildings is now tracking at over an 18 percent savings compared to the baseline in 2011, so you’re taking 55 of these buildings, combining it with all 500 and the entire portfolio. The city has saved nearly 20 percent just by targeting these low at these high energy users, write these low performers and making those investments. That was a huge step forward.

    Chris Castro:                        Secondly, we realized that one of the biggest apps was financing, offering the same. The fact that the city was able to get bond capital is a unique compared to the private sector, right? They can’t get a bond. They have to get alone and so we decided to enable the pace financing mechanism. The property assessed clean energy financing, and this was. This is about $500, million dollars of capital that’s available in Orlando today so that building owners and homeowners can make qualified, enter clean energy improvements to their homes without any out of pocket expense. Usually that upfront cost expense is the biggest barrier of entry, but if we can provide capital and they can use the savings to pay that assessment off over an extended term, then it’s a cash flow scenario from day one. Then you’re literally helping to spur a marketplace without needing to identify that financial barrier.

    Chris Castro:                        I was on a call today this morning with one of our major malls, a owner Simon Malls, which owns malls all around the world, so I’m in. Has a number of models in Orlando. Simon is doing right now as we speak, a two point $6,000,000 pace assessment in Orlando, one property owner. We’ve done millions of dollars in pace over the last year alone and the beauty is that that’s in addition to just helping with the carbon and the energy efficiency. It’s burring an economy that’s focused on improving resource productivity and energy efficiency across the spectrum. So that was another big move and then kind of the last thing I’ll share, I’m not going to hit all 12 or would it be here for an hour. The last thing I’ll share is that the mandatory building benchmarking energy audits and transparency policy, which Philadelphia also had in place and we lean a lot of great things from Philly this year.

    Chris Castro:                        Actually today on this call is the deadline for reporting for our buildings to report to the city and next year we actually go fully transparent to the public with an interactive mapping tool and helping the real estate marketplace better understand, you know, the cost of operations in one building over another in addition to the performance and the environmental impacts of building pack. These in addition to many other things including workforce development, creating new degrees that are college and university and kind of other training opportunities have built this ecosystem that is in the process of transforming the market as we know it in Orlando and really being driven off of being more fit. So instead of the energy project has been incredible. And working with Christina and her team. That’s the, you know, the. I think the benefit about being part of these types of networks is that we’re able to learn from each other and share resources with each other and accelerate each other’s implementation of these things because it’s not just us alone or doing this together as partners back to the partnership. The importance of partnership.

    Brady Halligan:                   Yeah, that’s crazy. You touched on that too because, you know, a question that I did ask, and you touched on it this whole time is collaboration between cities and leadership because you can’t sit in a silo or a bubble, um, and try to solve these complex problems. You know, you need to learn, you need to share out. And it’s really interesting how cities are now sharing and learning from each other. And, and Christine echoed the same thing as you’re talking about a help, you know, things that she learned from what you guys are doing and from what Denver and Boston and you know, this is how we’re going to push the needle forward. But Christine touched on this too because it has been a big issue and a part of her clear strategy is being a leader in this. In Philadelphia, but you know, it comes with this challenges and that is, you know, how do you engage the public and the citizens in these efforts to gain support because the more you engage the public, the more different types of divisiveness you’ll get, the different types of, of viewpoints and things and it become challenging, but yet it is so crucial and important.

    Brady Halligan:                   So I love to hear some strategies or what you’re doing to, to engage and you touched on it a little bit with you know, the data and then providing that to the public which is crucial education and what’s happening, what’s going on. So they understand. But are there any other things you can touch on in terms of public engagement?

    Chris Castro:                        I mean I think back to some of the strengths and weaknesses of Orlando. I have also never been part of a city or you know, witnessed the city’s community engagement as strong as what we have here locally. The amount of community groups and neighborhood associations and nonprofits who are prioritizing sustainability and working together to advance it in Orlando is the only reason why we are accelerating at the pace that we are nationally for this movement. Right. It doesn’t happen top down with just me being in this seat trying to influence internal colleagues about passing ambitious policies like bus or paste, right. It doesn’t happen though, worth nobody in the seated to make it happen, but really the most important part is getting the community to put pressure essentially at the end of the day on cities and provide some very unique solutions and ideas that we should read that we should consider in moving this forward.

    Chris Castro:                        I’ll give you a prime example. We’re in the process of updating our greenworks community action plan and Climate Action Plan and we’ve held a series of engagements. I’ve held three different community workshops, have over 150 people per workshop. We’ve held seven focused roundtables, each individual area of the greenworks plan. We’ve done three online public surveys to get those who weren’t able to make the workshops or the round tables to provide input and help us to prioritize the strategies that came out of that. And then lastly, we’ve held the task force that the mayor pulled together of community leaders to help us to put this into a plan and really move this effort forward. So in the in the development of our plans to the individual development of our policies. We have a strong culture of engaging the community to shape that, to provide feedback and input about how the city should move forward and that way when it does come forward to council, we have people who are coming out in droves who are supporting and providing positive reinforcement to those types of policies.

    Chris Castro:                        You know, the US policy building benchmarking policy was a controversial one that took me almost three years from implementation to actually get new council almost three years, hundreds of thousands, tens and tens of workshops, and this really came down to the community, sitting down with commissioners and telling them why this is so important. Having ideas for us here, of course the one of the leading and premier organizations driving community engagement around sustainability is also very unique and a big reason why we’re successful. Every month they’re hosting a workshop called the hive. In fact, tonight, every first Wednesday of the month, they host a community think tank around the sustainable development goals. Hundreds of people come out to basically provide their input and their feedback about what types of grassroots solutions we can develop and implement and those get bubbled up and get shared with the city and then we consider whether or not we can actually move forward with it and work with them along that way.

    Chris Castro:                        The last thing I’ll mention about this community engagement aspect is there’s also now a coalition of groups called the first 50 coalition. In fact, last year, about a year ago, we passed the hundred percent renewable electricity policy through the city of Orlando, a historic move for Orlando to literally have the vision led by Mayor Dyer to say, listen, by 20, 50, the entire electric grid powered by renewable energy and by 20, 30 all of municipal operations, whether it’s wastewater treatment plants, fire stations, police stations, admin buildings. All of them will be powered by renewables as well. That happened because we had a coalition of groups, this first 50 coalition which made up of social justice groups, traditional environmental groups, eighth based groups, labor interest groups, all of these literally about 50 organizations who came together and said, listen, we’re going to prioritize three to five strategies that will put Orlando Sustainability on an international map and really showcase to the world and these are the strategies we all can get behind or so everybody has their own objectives and missions, but we all can get behind these, these five things and advancing this policy for 100 percent.

    Chris Castro:                        Renewables was their first effort and that thing went through in a matter of two to three months. Cause there was so much positive reinforcement, there was hundreds of letters that came to the city to say this is important for our community and for public health. And it went and it was implemented. Right? So I think that we can’t underestimate the importance of engaging our communities, especially those who are vulnerable. Those who, who are underprivileged and minority communities who often don’t have a voice. We’ve been trying to really do our best to ensure that they’re part of the conversation. They’re part of crafting these plans and hopefully a part of taking advantage of the implementation of these strategies so that they can enhance our collective quality of life. That that’s the end game.

    Brady Halligan:                   It’s just so clear that how passionate you are about this and you can hear it through talking and gets you excited. And I mean that’s from, from what I’m hearing from you. And then just from my experience understanding what’s going on and in the sustainability realm, especially in Orlando and Philadelphia. I mean when you have somebody that’s leading the way that’s so passionate but also as empathy and can get a community excited around these things. I mean that also plays a huge role, so it helps. It definitely helps that I know that. All right, so it got a last little question for you. A little bit of a different thing, but a little bit more personal, kind of what keeps you up at night and what gets you up in the morning, you know, any challenges you face in your role and what are some of the exciting things that are happening that, that gets you going in the morning?

    Chris Castro:                        Yeah. So, so some of the challenges that I realized being in this role is that I’m never going to win every single battle and it’s important for us in these roles that we have a long game because sustainability is about that protecting the needs of today without compromising the needs of future generations. That is the definition of sustainability. And, and often, you know, I, I am presented with challenges whether they’re about economic development are actually developing, you know, it parcels throughout the city that I’ve tried my hardest to try to protect, but I, but I may not win every single poem, but it’s important and these are types of things that keep me up at night because I’m home can be perfect, but nobody’s perfect. No program will be perfect. There’s always going to be downfalls and that’s something I think we have to be cognizant of.

    Chris Castro:                        But at the end of the day, it’s the long game, right? It’s not about worrying about losing a battle, it’s really worrying about losing the entire war, so to speak. Right. And for lack of a better analogy in we’re in, we’re in this journey, sustainability is a journey, not a destination. This is a continuous iterative process for us to improve quality of life, environmental protection, and of course building a robust economy. That’s the whole point. And, and so often I get kind of get bogged down in myself at not being able to win every battle. But when you look at the long strides that we’re making around 100 percent renewables around pace, around electric buses, around local food systems, around solid waste, you started realizing that the long game is really what we need to start focusing on. And that’s really goes for all of my peers around the country.

    Chris Castro:                        From my experience. What wakes me up is a unfortunate to be a new dad and ability has now become this role. It has no longer become an ideology and something I’m passionate about because I’m knowledgeable in it and I studied it in my university. It’s x, Y, z. But it’s now visceral in that I have a daughter that now I am working to protect her future every single day. And that makes my job even 10 times more important than it was before her. Right? She’s now going to be 15 months old. And so certainly every single morning I’m waking up half the battle because of her and her teething and all this stuff that you go through when early childhood. But at the same time, you know, making sure that I contribute and do everything I possibly can to make sure that she has a better future than I.

    Chris Castro:                        I now realize what that means, but people told me that before and now actually can feel it internally and that’s what, that’s what wakes me up. It makes me want to go to work, keep pushing on some of these very tough battles that we’re going to continue to face as we grow into the 21st century. Amazing. Chris, congratulations to the new fatherhood and getting that up in the morning, not just because of the drive and passion and get to work, but then I’m sure also taking care of your new daughter also gets you up in the morning at random times. So how can city rising listeners engage with you, your office? Learn more and get involved. Yeah, so I definitely encourage everybody who’s listening to follow me on social media. I’m one of those active guys on social media outlets. So find me on LinkedIn, on me, on Facebook and twitter and instagram.

    Chris Castro:                        I’m constantly posting and trying to keep my network up updated about what we’re doing and Brady, you know well because I think you’re one of the followers who seen what we’re doing on a regular basis and the whole push towards what we’re doing, so encourage you to reach out to me personally. Also checkout greenworks, Orlando Dot com. This is the website that I meet that will take you to the city of Orlando, sustainability offices sustainability website, and that’ll give you a good overview of things we haven’t even touched right. Everything around local food and livability, solid waste transportation, water resources. We’ve been kind of heavy on the energy green buildings, but there’s so much going on in the city in a very comprehensive way and I hope that you visit the website and feel free to reach out to me. You have any questions or if I can provide any insights on what we’re doing, I’m happy to be a resource that I want to be an advocate and a resource for other cities. Began to move towards smarter, more resilient, more sustainable futures for all. So that’s the best way to get in touch with me.

    Brady Halligan:                   Fantastic. Well, Chris Casio, director of sustainability for the city of Orlando. Thank you so much for joining us today and sharing all the passion and the great things that you’re doing in Orlando and then keep up the great work, my friend. Thank you very much. I appreciate it and it was a pleasure to be on this thing.

    Thank you for tuning into City Rising. We hope this podcast helps you understand how climate change is presenting opportunities in our urban environments. Check the show notes for links from today’s podcast. This podcast is brought to you. Thanks to funding from cusp, the climate and urban systems partnership. For more information, visit cusp project.org.


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    Julie Hancher

    About Julie Hancher

    Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake.

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