Community Development Innovation Review

March 2014

Cleaner Energy and Health: Household, Local and Global Benefits


Energy is central to the very service systems that sustain human life and well-being such as transportation, buildings, materials, infrastructure, food, hygiene, thermal comfort, communications, and lighting. But how we choose to supply energy can also have negative consequences such as water scarcity, air pollution, and extreme weather related events. When we burn fossil fuels to produce energy, for example, greenhouse gas emissions trap heat in the lower atmosphere and affect the quality of environmental services, the global climate, and our health. This year in the United States alone, more than 10,000 people will die from complications connected to air pollution. And we must not forget that energy goes hand in glove with another life-sustaining resource—water. Water is essential to operating power plants. When power plants produce more energy, they use more water and compete for this finite resource with other industries in drought-prone areas. The result is higher costs of water and energy.

Download the article (pdf, 138.54 kb)

Other articles in this issue

Mixing Asset Building with Energy Efficiency: A Recipe for Financial and Environmental Sustainability

The Future of the Clean (Green) Economy

Financing Energy Efficiency Retrofits of Affordable Multifamily Buildings

Manufactured Homes Help Both Save the Planet and Save Money for Low-Income Owners

Utilities and Community Developers Partner to Improve the Energy Efficiency of Affordable Rental Housing Nationwide

Integrating Energy Efficiency into Mortgage Financing: Promising Efforts in the New York City Multifamily Building Sector

Home Energy Efficiency and Mortgage Risks: An Extended Abstract

Charter Schools Ripe for Green Investments

Financing Energy Efficiency in Low-Income Multifamily Rental Housing: A Progress Update from the Low Income Investment Fund

Neighborhood Health: A New Framework for Investing in Sustainable Communities

Bringing Down Green Financing Costs: How a State-sponsored Bank Might be the Key

Understanding the True Benefits of both Energy Efficiency and Job Creation

Can Cities Lead the Way in Innovative Energy Retrofits for Single-Family Homes?

Lenders’ Property Standards and Energy Efficiency: The Vital Link for Affordable Housing

Energy to Heal: Health Care, Climate Change, and Community Resilience