Mayor donates climate award to ecology group

Evanston Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl Thursday received a Climate Protection Award from the U.S. Conference of Mayors and donated the $15,000 cash prize provided by Walmart to the non-profit Citizens' Greener Evanston.
The award, first announced a few weeks ago, recognizes mayors for innovative practices in their cities that increase energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Evanston was honored in part for reducing municipal greenhouse gas emissions by 22 percent since 2005. In all, 130 cities applied for the award.
Top: At the Ecology Center for the award ceremony were Kevin McCarty, assistant executive director for transportation of the mayors' conference; Mayor Tisdahl; State Rep. Robyn Gabel of Evanston; Citizens' Greener Evanston Chair Ron Fleckman, Debra DeHaney-Howard, assistant executive director for energy policy for the mayor's conference along with her daughter Madison, and John Bisio, director of public affairs and government relations for Walmart.





Why donate to a private group?

Are there strings attached to this award?  Why not use the money for city-based environmental initiatives.
For instance, this money could fund several bike corrals.  Or it could go to pay for some of the deferred maintenance on the Ecology Center (where they happen to be standing).
I find it ironic that the city is getting this "Climate Protection Award" when in the past few months the council has killed off bike corrals, failed to act on I-Go's solar electric car charging station proposal, and tried to gut the green building ordinance!  That wins you an award?!?!?!
Also, I have no beef with Citizens for Greener Evanston, but what exactly do they do??  Yes they spearheaded the climate plan a couple of years ago, but since then all they seem to do is sponsor art shows and "green drinks."  Go to their web page and you see a couple of reports on transportation and housing written over a decade ago!   I haven't seen them engage in any actual political pressure when the council makes non-green policy choices.  Well, I guess the 15K will pay for a bunch of "green drinks."