Angelo Norelli, 67, is one of more than 300 homeowners from Oakland and Uptown recruited for the Grassroots Green Homes program. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

This Pittsburgh program is tackling climate change, inequality and your neighbor’s energy bill one light bulb at a time

Angelo Norelli’s house in Uptown was always cold. Too cold for his seven grandchildren to visit in the winter. Even with an extra heater running in his bedroom, he still had to use several blankets to sleep. And he didn’t know where the heat was escaping. Norelli, 67, didn’t have a lot of extra money or energy to figure it out either.

Tyler Mower, 20, has been undergoing training to become a steamfitter at the Steamfitters Local 449 technology training center in Harmony, Pa. (Photo by Teake Zuidema/PublicSource)

Will Pittsburgh flourish as a hub of eds and meds or gas and petrochemicals? Can we have it both ways?

Pittsburgh now brands itself as a modern city built on research, robots, universities, advanced manufacturing, green energy — and the high-skilled jobs that come with it all.

But there’s another narrative developing: The plethora of shale gas and natural gas liquids in Southwestern Pennsylvania provide a solid foundation to build a new gas and petrochemical hub in Pittsburgh’s backyard.

Helena Nichols is associate director of Rodef Shalom’s biblical botanical garden. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

Activists aren’t the only ones preaching about climate change. Some Pittsburgh congregations do, too.

The relationship between people and their natural environment is debated within various religious scriptures, teachings and sanctuaries.

To shed light on the conversation from the religious angle, PublicSource interviewed faith leaders and staff of Pittsburgh-area places of worship across five denominations to learn if and how caring for the Earth belongs in the edifice of religion.

Key takeaways from our interview with Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority Interim Executive Director Robert Weimar

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Bob Weimar has been serving as the interim executive director of the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority for almost a year. And he is forging ahead with plans to revamp the organization and tackle the city’s lead issue despite numerous water main breaks and other setbacks, he said in an interview with PublicSource on Wednesday. One of Weimar’s priorities is to change the chemical that PWSA uses to control lead corrosion in its service lines, a move he hopes will drop lead levels down to single digits citywide and buy the organization the time it needs to locate, remove and replace the lead lines. He said Wednesday that he is awaiting approval from the state Department of Environmental Protection [DEP] to make the chemical change, and hopes to add it to PWSA’s systems by the spring. Weimar is taking other changes — including those to PWSA’s governing structure — in stride.