How Can Athens Get to 100%

The Fundamentals of the Road to 100%

While every city who pursues 100% Clean and Renewable energy is different, there are overall elements to consider and utilize when the plan is first being built. 

  • Education on energy efficiency, clean and renewable energy, and renewable energy credits for the stakeholders
  • Collaborate with residents, local organizations, utilities, and local government to assess and understand community needs
  • Conserve through Energy Efficiency (i.e. Weatherizing homes), an undervalued tactic to 100%
  • Displace fossils fuels in favor of energy sources that have lower Greenhouse Gases (GHG) emissions, such as clean and renewable energy sources
  • Often, it is necessary to change state policy and/or to purchase offsets through *Renewable Energy Credits (REC) to truly reach 100%

The first two bulletin points will be crucial as ACC moves forward with the Planning Process

*RECs are a tradable, non-tangible energy commodity that represents proof that 1 MWh of electricity was generated from an eligible renewable energy resource and was fed into the U.S. electric power grid. Essentially, funds from Athens would be used to buy clean and renewable energy being produced from somewhere else. While this supports long term global energy goals, RECs would not provide direct benefit to the local Athens community because it would not gain the other tangible benefits associated with producing clean and renewable energy locally. If you are interested in learning more about the benefits that Clean and Renewable energy could have in Athens, you can check out the Economy tab for more information

High Country Conservation Energy Pyramid

General Approach, Strategies, and Tools

ACEEE Reports the most common and robust energy efficiency strategies being implemented by cities in their resilience planning efforts include:

  • Encouraging sustainable modes of transportation 
  • Promoting transit-oriented development and transit efficiency strategies 
  • Increasing the number of private electric vehicles (EVs) 
  • Setting bench-marking, energy audit, and retrofit requirements for buildings 
  • Requiring fuel switching and/or electrification in buildings  
  • Developing micro-grids 
  • Establishing municipal building and fleet efficiency policies

ACEEE also reports the renewable energy strategies being implemented including

  • Increasing local wind energy generation 
  • Increasing the use of solar-plus-storage system
  • Constructing waste-to-energy facilities 
  • Installing or purchasing municipal renewable energy

BAU Energy Type

Figure 1: shows Athens current and projections to 2035 Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions based on type of energy consumption.Projections to 2035 show that if business as usual continues, there is not much significant impact on carbon reductions within several sectors. Photo produced by Greenlink Analytics.

Current And Projected Sources of Athen Energy

Figure 2: shows the current and projected breakdown of Athens energy sources in Georgia Power’s energy territory between now and 2035. GP currently has about 8% of their grid energy coming from renewables (hydro and solar), and that the company does have plans to increase some renewable energy generation under business as usual projections through 2035. However, this is not nearly enough to get Athens to Clean and Renewable Energy Goals by 2035. A more aggressive plan is needed to reach the Athens 100% Clean Energy Goals. Photo produced by Greenlink Analytics.

Examples in Practice

Across the U.S. over 150 cities, more than ten counties and seven states, have already adopted ambitious 100% clean energy goals. The Sierra Club has gone ahead and created a map that showcases the cities who have adopted 100% Renewable Resolutions, or have succeeded in becoming 100% Renewable. 

Cities On the Way

The cities listed below are some examples cities that have put forth a 100% Clean and Renewable Resolution, or might already have created a Clean and Renewable Plan for their cities. Over 100 cities have pledged to move forward with 100% Clean and Renewable in their municipalities, and you can see the list here

It Can Be Done

The cities listed below have achieved 100% Clean and Renewable energy within their municipalities. You can read below how they achieved it and what Clean and Renewable looks like in their city. More cities that have achieved 100% are listed on the Sierra Club website 

As the plan continues to develop, this section will include clean energy types (e.g., EE, solar, etc.) and options to achieve those

USE_Road to 100 Timeline_update_2020-06-01