Clarkston, Georgia, USA

Clarkson, Georgia, USA

  • Target: 100% renewable energy by 2050, the city’s fleet vehicles will be zero-emission by 2035
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Energy efficiency, electric vehicle, solar and net-zero building standards
  • Implementation: When Clarkson adopted the resolution to transition to 100 percent clean and renewable energy by 2050, it became the second city in the state of Georgia to make this commitment, one year after Atlanta. The aim: a future Clarkston with cleaner air, water, and more economic opportunities. The city is working with the City of Atlanta and communities across the metro area to make the clean energy transition, which will help tackle climate change and create a more resilient future. To grow in a smart and sustainable direction, the majority millennial council is updating development ordinances to incentivise more walkable, bikeable neighborhoods and greenways. It is also encouraging energy efficiency, electric vehicle, solar and net-zero building standards.
    The city's community wide plan ensures that historically marginalized communities should be the first to receive the benefits of the investments into  the transition to a clean energy economy. The city created the affordable housing trust fund to provide energy efficiency housing rehabilitation for fixed income residents to help cut down on their monthly energy bills. Source: sierraclub.org
  • Population: 12,742 (2016)
  • Area: 1.4 sq mi (2.7 km2)
  • Link: Clarkston, Georgia Commits to 100 Percent Clean, Renewable Energy
Clarkson, Georgia, USA
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Cleveland, Ohio, USA

West Side Market, Cleveland, Ohio, USA

  • Target: 100% renewable electricity by 2050, reduce residential and commercial energy use 50% by 2030
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Offshore wind power industry on Lake Erie, solar power plants on former industrial sites, green buildings
  • Implementation: Cleveland was once America’s industrial heartland as well as one of the country's most polluted cities. To transform its image and respond to climate change, Cleveland has pledged to transition to 100% renewable power by 2050. According to Mayor Frank Jackson, the city’s plan is to reduce its carbon emissions to 80% below those in 2020. Actions will create a more sustainable Cleveland and strengthen the city's economy. This will be based on renewable energy projects coupled with battery storage alongside energy efficiency and green buildings. These will lower utility and maintenance costs, incur less risk from energy price volatility, increase property values, improve health and productivity of occupants, and create local jobs. The National Renewable Energy Lab estimates there are enough rooftops in the Cuyahoga County to generate more than 10 times as much solar power. These would meet 44% of the city’s electricity needs, while solar power plants and offshore wind turbines could provide the rest.
    Cleveland's two utility companies — Cleveland Public Power and First Energy are important actors in the transition. CPP is adding renewables to its portfolio. Meanwhile renewable energy credits have been purchased by the city to provide for 50,000 homes and 5,000 small businesses in First Energy’s service area. The city has created an Clean Energy Equity plan  to help low-income households and small organizations purchase renewables and assist in weatherizing homes.
    The city's Climate Action Plan was informed by a 90-person Climate Action Advisory Committee consisting of leaders from community groups.
  • Population:  383,793 (2018)
  • Area:  82.47 sq mi (213.60 km2) city, 3,979 sq mi (10,307 km2) metro
  • Link: Advanced And Renewable Energy | City of Cleveland
West Side Market, Cleveland, Ohio, USA

Coelbe District, Germany

Kasseler Straße, Cölbe, Germany

  • Target: 100% renewable energy overall for the community by 2040
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Solar and biomass energy.
  • Implementation: Coelbe district in Germany is made up of six rural communities (Bernsdorf, Buergeln, Coelbe, Reddehausen, Schoenstadt and Schwarzenborn), located in the state of Hessen. In 2011, the Coelbe government unanimously decided across political party lines to set a community wide target of using only renewable energy resources to meet demand by the year 2040. Similarly in January 2012, the state of Hessen decided  to transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050.
    Coelbe has created a climate protection plan that lays out how they will achieve the 100% target. The plan takes into account appropriate technologies, costs, integration with climate goals, public relations, and action steps. Coelbe anticipates that by transitioning to renewable energy and efficiency upgrades, it will save up to € 5 million in energy costs annually. Milestones achieved so far include solar panel installations on several municipal properties. The largest generates enough electricity to meet more than 10% of Coelbe's power demand. It is jointly owned by the municipality and by individuals who have personally invested in shares or certificates that generate 6.8% returns, ensuring that the local citizens and community reap the economic benefits of the solar system. Another example of community's energy transition is a heating grid in Schoenstadt built by the village cooperative, fueled by wood chips from the local saw mill, and which supplies heat for 80% of the village buildings. Such projects have attracted visitors from other countries to come learn best practices and have engaged local community members to volunteer to help manage them.
  • Population: 11600 (2017)
  • Area: 73 km2 (28.18 sq mi)
  • Link: https://www.coelbe.de/energie/mein-coelbe/111-energie/173-erneuerbare-energien
Kasseler Straße, Cölbe, Germany

Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia

Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia

  • Target: 100% RE by 2030, with an interim target of 25% in 2020 and 50% in 2025.
  • Status: In progress -  In 2014 already 39% of all Coffs Harbour households or businesses have installed rooftop solar PV systems.
  • RES: Solar power and energy-efficient street lighting
  • Implementation: Coffs Harbour City Council set a 100% RE as a corporate, organisational target for itself in March 2015. Although the target did not apply to the rest of the city area, its aim was to make the Council a role model of sustainability to the Coffs Harbour area. The Council committed to reducing annual corporate CO2 emissions by 25% on 2010 levels by 2020 and by 50% by 2025. In 2004, it was the first council in Australia to introduce energy-efficient street lighting across its entire local government area. In 2010, the Council installed the largest public rooftop solar power array in NSW on the top of Rigby House which saves $30,000 per annum in electricity costs. It has also installed solar panels at the local Botanic Gardens. In October 2013, Council adopted a Climate Change Policy. It adopted an energy fund for investment into efficiency works and renewables that will be financed through 10% of the difference in costs between the black and green energy purchased by Council, or AUS$100,000 a year, whichever is the greater. A Coffs Harbour Emissions Reduction Plan (CHERP) has been effective from January 2016, which sets out a framework on how the Council monitors, reviews and reports on its emissions and RE.
  • Population: 70,000 (2017)
  • Area: 1,175 km2
  • Link: https://www.coffscoastadvocate.com.au/news/council-sets-ambitious-energy-and-emissions-target/2579807/
Coffs Harbour, NSW, Australia

Columbia, South Carolina, USA

South Carolina State House, Columbia, South Carolina, USA

  • Target: 100% renewable energy by 2036
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Solar energy
  • Implementation: As the first municipality in South Carolina to commit to 100% renewable energy, the city of Columbia today powers its municipal buildings with 100% solar energy and all of the traffic lights have been converted to LED. When record downpours in 2015 caused severe flooding in Columbia, destroying roads and dams, causing billions of dollars in damage, and costing 19 people their lives, its Mayor Steve Benjamin pushed to address the growing threat of climate disruption by supporting clean energy legislation at state and local levels. In June 2017, Columbia adopted its clean energy resolution. To meet this goal, the city planned to implement  a thorough energy efficiency audit, a solar-powered wastewater facility, and transition municipal operations to 100% renewable energy. These efforts would run parallel to sustainable water management and wastewater infrastructure improvements that are designed to guard against future flooding. Community health was another motivation for the 100% target, as this impacted by fossil-fuel pollution and natural disasters. The resolution also emphasizes economic growth, job creation, and reduced utility costs. The city makes use of the Solarize South Carolina program and legislation that not only lifted the cap on net metering and rooftop solar, but also help increase solar energy–related jobs in Columbia by 46% in just one year (2015-2016). Columbia did face some setbacks - solar legislation stipulated a cap if solar output reached 2% of peak energy production.  Rapid growth of solar energy in Columbia and other parts of the state triggered this cap several years sooner than expected, which may have resulted in the loss of many solar-related jobs and a drop in solar power usage. A bill that proposed allowing new customers to install home solar panels failed at the state level. Also, plans to develop a solar-powered wastewater facility were stalled by the 2015 floods, and the local utility backed out. The city has now taken up the project and is looking to redesign and build the facility itself. In December 2017, Columbia became the only city in South Carolina to receive a 3-star certification by STAR Communities, a measure of local sustainability progress against national standards. The city has set a goal to improve its rating from 3 stars to 4 (out of a possible 5) over the next three years.
  • Population: 133,451 (2018)
  • Area: 134.9 sq mi (349 km2)
  • Link: https://www.columbiasc.net/mayor/initiatives/clean-energy
South Carolina State House, Columbia, South Carolina, USA

Communauté de Communes du Mené, France

Pontrieux, Le Mené, France

  • Target: 100% Renewable Energy by 2030
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Biomass and biogas energy.
  • Implementation: The Communauté de Communes du Mené is composed of 7 villages in Mené, located in the Côtes d'Armor region in Brittany, France. Due to the abundance in  agricultural resources and the need to boost their local economy, they decided to embark on a plan to achieve 100% renewable based on local energy, by 2030. It all began in  the early 2000's when local farmers began to seriously worry about their impact on the environment and local economic development. To tackle this challenge, they first set themselves an interim target of becoming zero net energy--that is producing as much energy as it consumes--for heating and electricity by 2012. Since then, several milestones has been reached. In 2007, a facility that produces rapeseed oil and diesel for tractors was opened in Saint Gouéno . The plant also makes cattle cake that is used by local dairy farmers (which eliminated the need to import soy cattle cake from Brazil). In two other Communes in Mené, locally grown wood was sourced to generate heating for 4500 square meters of buildings, which soon replaced 300 tonnes of petroleum based heating oil. Heating systems will also add wood from a plantation irrigated by waste water from Géotexia, a new biogas plant. Work is underway on a 25 MW wind farm, and 35 new zero-energy residential buildings are being developed.
  • Population: 6 453 (2012)
  • Area: 163,23 km²
  • Link: https://www.mene.fr/environnement-developpement-durable/les-energies/
Pontrieux, Le Mené, France

Concord, New Hampshire, USA

Concord, New Hampshire, USA

  • Target: 100% renewable electricity by 2030, 100% clean energy in all sectors by 2050
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Solar and wind power
  • Implementation: The state capital of Concord has received strong support from public, private, and faith-based sectors in its goal to achieve a clean energy future, joining three other New Hampshire cities in this quest. The city has begun the planning process to achieve its clean energy goals. On July 9, 2018, the Concord City Council voted unanimously to work toward 100% clean and renewable energy. The resolution already received plenty community support, with endorsements from the State Employees Association, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Concord, the Chamber of Commerce, and the editorial board of The Concord Monitor. The capital’s largest private sector employer, Concord Hospital, was also supportive of the initiative. Concord’s resolution states that Concord Energy and the Environment Advisory Committee will work with the city government to create a stakeholder committee that will help shape Concord’s strategic energy plan. This measure is intended to ensure that every part of the Concord community is able to offer input on the plan, which the city plans to gather through public meetings. Within the first year, the Energy and Environment Committee will lead the development of a strategic plan to establish feasible pathways to complete the transition to 100% clean energy.

    The city has already taken steps in implementation. It is planning the development of a large solar photovoltaic facility on the city’s closed landfill. It is developing changes to the local zoning ordinance to accommodate the siting of solar projects. It is investigating opportunities to use New Hampshire’s Volkswagen settlement money to invest in electric-vehicle charging infrastructure in the city. It is engaging in discussions with major city institutions, local gas and electric utilities, and state policymakers about how best to achieve the adopted renewable energy goals. Concord is also making use of statewide legislation that promotes clean energy for all New Hampshire residents. These measures include tax incentives for individuals, businesses, and nonprofits, as well as net metering for homeowners using solar- or wind-generated power.
  • Population: 43,412 (2018)
  • Area: 67.5 sq mi (174.8 km2)
  • Link: 100% RENEWABLE ENERGY GOAL STRATEGIC PLAN (Draft)
Concord, New Hampshire, USA

Cook Islands

Cook Islands

  • Target: Eliminate carbon emissions by 2020.
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Solar photovoltaic arrays
  • Implementation: The Cook Islands depend heavily on imported fuels and the cost of electricity based on these fuels is very high. Although nearly all households in the Cook Islands are connected to grid electricity, only 5.5% of households have additional solar photovoltaic systems installed, and 1% use small diesel generators. Several actions have taken place throughout the islands to increase the uptake of renewable energy. In the country's south, the Asian Development Bank's Ordinary Capital Resources has loaned US$11.19 to help fund solar projects. The EU has invested US$7.26 million, and the Cook Islands government has added an in-kind contribution of US$5.83 million. The total funding for the build out comes with an installation target in megawatts. The solar projects is expected to save 1.09 million liters of diesel consumption annually, and cut carbon dioxide emissions by 2,930 tons. This project will assist the Cook Islands government’s Office of the Energy Commissioner and the Renewable Energy Development Division in developing an energy efficiency policy implementation plan. In May 2015, the Government of New Zealand announced the completion of solar array projects in Rakahanga, Pukapuka, Nassau, Palmerston, and on the northern Cook islands of Penrhyn and Manihiki, where solar photovoltaic panels are expected to provide over 95 per cent of the electricity needs for the villages they connect to and deliver power to more than 230 homes and public buildings.
  • Population: 17,379 (2016)
  • Area: 236.7 km2 (91.4 sq mi)
  • Link: http://www.mfem.gov.ck/447-cook-islands-renewable-energy-chart-planning
Cook Islands

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

  • Target: Carbon neutral capital by 2025.
  • Status: In progress
  • RES: Windpower, solar energy, biomass cogeneration plants, biogas and hybrid buses, electrical and hydrogen-powered cars, and energy retrofitted buildings.
  • Implementation: The city of Copenhagen, Denmark, aims at be a carbon neutral capital by 2025. In 2014, the city received the European Green Capital Award and in 2013 the Climate Leadership Prize. In 2009, Copenhagen City Council adopted a 2015 climate plan for the city, which resulted in a reduction of COemissions by 21% by 2011 in comparison to 2005 figures. To reach the 2025 carbon free target, the city will focus on four main areas: energy consumption, energy production, mobility, and city administration initiatives. It includes the construction of land and offshore wind turbines, energy retrofitted buildings, implementation of Low-Energy Construction in all buildings, and promotion of solar energy. In addition to that, the city plans the switch from coal to biomass in heat and power plants, geothermal plant, more renewable energy in the country´s electricity grid, and the obligation of energy companies to save energy. The capital is also taking into account the stricter European regulations on fuel efficiency, the promotion of cycling, biogas and hybrid buses, and the introduction of electrical and hydrogen-powered cars. The city administration is reducing its own energy consumption in its buildings by 40% in comparison to 2010, and is fuelling all city administration vehicles with electricity, hydrogen, or biofuels.. The constant evaluation and follow-up of the city's Plan is secured through the preparation of an annual report and meeting of various stakeholders for dialogue and benchmarking. In addition to that, three general evaluations of the plan would occur: in 2015-2016 to evaluate the period 2013-2016, in 2019-2020 to evaluate the period 2017-2020, and in 2025-2026 when the final evaluation of the plan will take place.
  • Population: 777,218 (city), 2,057,737 (metro) (2018)
  • Area: 178.46 km2 (68.90 sq mi)(city), 1,767.52 km2(682.44 sq mi)(metro)
  • Link: https://international.kk.dk/artikel/carbon-neutral-capital
Copenhagen, Denmark

Costa Rica

Fortuna, Costa Rica

  • Target: Achieve 100% RE in the electricity sector and to be ‘carbon neutral’, by 2021.
  • Status: In progress - In 2017, Costa Rica supplies around  93% of its total electricity needs from renewable energy sources, mostly from domestic hydro.
  • RES: Hydropower (majority share), solar, biogas, geothermal and wind power.
  • Implementation: Since decreasing rainfall in the future will pose a risk to the electricity system, Costa Rica is diversifying its electricity mix by developing other forms of renewable energy, such as solar, biogas, geothermal, and wind power. The plan is for the state-owned The Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (ICE) to purchase power from independent power producers in Costa Rica over 15-year contracts. This will mean a gradual decentralization of the electricity system. The country is also encouraging the broader adoption of electric vehicles (EVs), given that transportation represents approximately 44% of final energy consumption. Targeted incentives for the import and sale of EVs as well as for the development of charging infrastructure is offered by the government. 
  • Population: 4,857,274 (2016)
  • Area: 51,100 km2(19,700 sq mi)
  • Link: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/feb/25/costa-rica-plan-decarbonize-2050-climate-change-fight
Fortuna, Costa Rica