- Target: 100% renewable energy by 2050
- Status: In progress
- RES: Solar power
- Implementation: Largely rural, the city of Norman is home to the University of Oklahoma, the state’s largest university. Since 2018, Norman had worked towards replacing its oil and gas dependency with natural wind and solar resources. The move towards 100% clean energy began when a franchise agreement between the city and its utility provider, Oklahoma Gas & Electric (OG&E) had expired which prompted activists to urge the city to transition to cleaner energy options. Fracking in the state had resulted in methane pollution, earthquakes, and water contamination. This also provide a strong impetus for increasing Oklahoma’s renewable energy generation and consumption. After a year long campaign, the volunteer-led team persuaded the city to commit to 100% clean, renewable energy across all sectors, including heat and transportation, by 2050. The resolution was voted unanimously in 2018 and made Norman the first city in Oklahoma to adopt such a goal.
The Council acknowledged the environmental benefits, job opportunities, and economic advantages of renewable energy. There was strong cross-community support from environmental, commercial, educational, and faith groups. With its two utilities, OG&E (the primary utility) and OEC (a rural electric co-op), the city began determining its best options for moving to clean energy. The University of Oklahoma began using 100% renewable energy through the purchase of renewable energy credits. The city explored a solar program for its public schools and looked at updating its legislation to make the adoption of solar energy easier. A 2017 pilot program incentivized energy-efficient home building. The city included further plans to promote electric vehicles and greener building practices.
- Population: 124,880 (2019)
- Area: 189.4 sq mi (490.6 km2)
- Link: https://www.sierraclub.org/press-releases/2019/03/norman-becomes-first-oklahoma-city-commit-100-percent-clean-renewable-energy