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Pedro Szekely / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

By Andrea Germanos

Chicago made history on Wednesday by becoming the largest U.S. city to commit to 100 percent renewable energy before the middle of the century.

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69 percent of Chicago's office space square footage is now green-certified. Marco Verch / CC BY 2.0

By Hilary Firestone and Olivia Walker

City Energy Project cities once again dominated CBRE's list of greenest U.S. commercial real estate markets. CBRE, the world's largest commercial real estate services and investment firm, released their fourth annual Green Building Adoption Index study in partnership with Maastricht University, examining nationwide commercial building energy use trends and impacts of energy efficiency programs and policies on U.S. building markets.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

1Flatworld / Flickr

It would appear that the Trump Organization's business practices aren't any more environmentally friendly than the policies of the current president, who ran it from 1971 to 2017.

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High manganese levels were detected last year in air around S.H. Bell's South Avenue "O" facility. Google Maps

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it would start testing the soil in residential yards in Chicago's Southeast Side for the dangerous neurotoxin manganese, The Chicago Tribune reported Thursday.

The EPA will also explain the soil sampling at a community discussion from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

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Chicago White Sox. redlegsfan21 / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

The Chicago White Sox are the first team in Major League Baseball to ban plastic straws.

Drinks served during games at Guaranteed Rate Field no longer come with the single-use plastic, which pollutes our oceans, lakes and rivers and can cause harm to aquatic creatures. Biodegradable straws are provided upon request.

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Citibike station in midtown Manhattan. Jim Henderson, CC BY

By Douglas Johnson

Residents of major U.S. cities are becoming used to seeing docks for bike sharing programs nestled into parking spaces or next to subway station entrances. Adorned with stylish branding and corporate sponsors' logos, these facilities are transforming transportation in cities across the country.

The modern concept of bike sharing—offering bikes for short-term public rental from multiple stations in cities—was launched in Copenhagen in 1995, but U.S. cities only started piloting their own systems in the past decade. Washington, DC led the way, launching SmartBike DC in 2008 and an expanded network called Capital Bikeshare in 2010. This program now boasts more than 480 stations and a daily ridership of 5,700.

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Russ Gremel / Facebook / Chicago Tribune

By James O'Hare

Some people feel the need to let everyone know they have money. They talk about it incessantly or constantly remind people of their wealth by putting their name on buildings in gaudy letters. Others prefer to put those dollars to good use.

About 70 years ago, Russ Gremel made a wise investment.

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Chicago River

By Henry Henderson

In this moment where the Trump administration seems adamant about abdicating their responsibilities to protect the nation and the world against the ravages of climate change, state and local action has become all the more essential.

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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has his own ideas about the Trump administration taking down important climate data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website.

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Chicago from the air over Lake Michigan. Photo credit: OZinOH via Flickr

By Henry Henderson

President Trump clearly doesn't like Chicago. He takes a swipe at the city every chance he gets. But the latest salvo in his war on Chicago is likely to impact a lot more than just the Second City.

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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel atop Shedd Aquarium.

By Alexander Laska

The city of Chicago announced this week that renewable energy will power 100 percent of all of its government buildings by 2025, making the Windy City the country's largest to make that pledge.

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