Cleaner, cheaper, healthier energy is here. It’s time for leaders across the U.S. to commit to 100% clean and renewable energy for all. See how your city ranks in clean energy, clean transportation and energy saving buildings and take action below!
Cities have long been the hotbed of innovation, the drivers of change, the incubators of solutions to the world’s biggest challenges. Clean energy is the latest example of how leadership at the local level is pushing the envelope at a critical juncture.
This report showcases 10 U.S. cities that have made ambitious commitments to be powered by 100% renewable energy.
For a variety of reasons and in diverse circumstances, public officials and community leaders see the transition from dirty fossil fuels to clean energy not as an obligation but as an opportunity. Cities powered by 100% clean energy save taxpayer dollars, help their residents save money, create good jobs, and foster a better quality of life. They are catalysts for a new economy and clean energy future.
THESE CITIES SHOW US THAT
- Clean energy keeps money in local government coffers. Solar prices have dropped 80% in recent years and wind 60%. Georgetown, Texas, found that renewables made sound fiscal sense as it could lock in lower rates for solar power, and renewables use far less water than fossil fuels— critical in a state accustomed to drought.
- Clean energy creates local jobs. The solar industry already employs more than 200,000 people, and in 2015 job growth in the solar industry was 12 times greater than in the general economy. A just transition to a modernized, smart power grid can create millions of new, living-wage good careers. In San Diego, California, the Republican mayor was able to convince business leaders to sign on to a 100% renewables plan because of the promise of techsector and solar manufacturing jobs.
- Clean energy saves people money. Clean energy can bring economic benefits to every American family. Stanford scientists studied this issue and concluded that the transition to a clean energy economy would save the average American family over $200 a year in energy costs and $1,500 a year in healthcare costs.
- Clean energy cuts pollution and saves lives. Clean energy can address harms faced by front line communities that have suffered the worst consequences of fossilfuel pollution. Air and water pollution emitted by coal and natural gas plants is linked to asthma, neurological damage, heart attacks, and cancer. Replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy reduces premature mortality.
“We’ve taken a unique approach to achieving 100% renewable energy goal in the city of San Diego by 2035. And what’s unique about San Diego is we approached it not only from the perspective of how do we protect the environment from a moral perspective, but also from an economic development and job creation perspective as well.”
Economic Director for the City of San Diego, CA
“I want clean energy because there is just one planet earth, and by making a single difference in the way we waste energy and the waste of fossil fuels, we can make a bigger change for a healthy and brighter future.”
Natalia Martínez Torres
Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico
“I’m taking action because of the identities I hold as a young, queer, Iranian-American person. I believe that it is my responsibility, both to myself and to the people I love, to take action for just, equitable climate solutions.”
Lincoln High School (class of 2016)
Kian, a high school student in San Jose, California, is a leader on campus working with Seize the Grid to get his school to install solar panels and mentoring other high school students on how to organize for clean energy solutions.
“My faith pushes me to combat climate change. As Pope Francis recognizes, each of us can have an impact in our own way. That’s why I’m organizing with Seize the Grid and working with my campus, Loyola University of Maryland, to power our campus with 100% clean energy.”
Loyola University of Maryland
Inspired by the Pope, Loyola University announced they will sign onto the President’s Climate Commitment. Students like Blythe have been pushing for almost two years to have the school adopt a 100% clean energy goal.
Sue Parkison, a widowed mother of four, was struggling since her husband passed away. She could barely afford to heat her home in the cold Connecticut winters or the electricity from her utility. Sue heard about MyDomino, an energy savings concierge service, and with MyDomino’s guidance, had her ductwork upgraded and major leaks fixed in her windows and doors. She installed a solar array on her roof with no upfront costs. Now her power bills have dropped dramatically and she’s establishing a legacy of clean energy for her children.
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Source: Ready For 100 | Sierra Club