GREEN
07/12/2011 06:03 pm ET Updated Sep 11, 2011

Rahm Emanuel Promises To Make Buildings More Energy Efficient

Less than three months into his Chicago tenure, Mayor Rahm Emanuel is already making energy efficiency a top priority.

Several of Chicago's landmark structures are poised to get a green makeover. The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Emanuel unveiled a plan to reduce the carbon footprint of the Harold Washington Library, City Hall and other iconic city structures.

The deal will reportedly save Chicago residents up to $5.7 million in taxes, and add a couple of hundred jobs. But in order to accomplish this feat, the Chicago Tribune notes that the city is aiming to raise millions in private financing.

"By investing in energy efficiency across the city, we will spur job creation and use taxpayer funds more effectively," Emanuel told the Tribune. "This is the kind of creative initiative that we're interested in cultivating in Chicago, linking sustainable policies and economic growth."

Emanuel's green initiative comes less than two weeks after former President Bill Clinton held a job-creation forum in the Windy City. It was at that event where Clinton praised Emanuel for his willingness to combine technical innovation with green ingenuity. Emanuel plans to ramp up Chicago's number of environmentally-certified buildings over the next four years.