Chicago Latest U.S. City to Announce 100 Percent Zero-Carbon or Renewable Energy Goal

Chicago’s Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that the “Windy City” will make the transition to 100 percent clean, renewable energy in buildings community-wide by 2035.

Dubbed Resilient Chicago, the city’s emissions-free, renewable energy strategic plan is one of a growing number of similar initiatives on the part of U.S. cities that have joined environmental group Sierra Club’s “Ready for 100” campaign.

Chicago’s 100 Percent Zero-Carbon Goal

Chicago is the largest U.S. city to join the initiative to date, according to an industry news report. Chicago is home to Exelon, the largest owner and operator of nuclear power plants in the U.S., the news report notes. Eleven nuclear reactors are up and running across the state.

Other U.S. cities have announced plans to transition to 100 percent renewable or zero-carbon emissions energy. It’s not part of the Sierra Club’s Ready for 100, but Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti back in 2016 announced the City of Angels had set out on a path towards 100 percent renewable energy by setting a goal of 50 percent by 2030.

“Los Angeles is a leader in the fight against climate change, and we’re on our way to a clean energy future,” Garcetti stated at the time. “The motion passed today will bring more progress toward the goals laid out in my Sustainable City pLAn and the directives I issued to LADWP following the Aliso Canyon disaster — taking action to achieve 50% renewable energy by 2030, ending our use of coal five years before that, and working to reduce our dependence on natural gas. Environmental stewardship is a value we treasure in L.A..”

State government leaders have announced 100 percent zero-carbon or renewable energy goals, as well. Enacted last September, California Senate Bill 100 sets the Golden State — the world’s fifth-largest economy — on a path towards complete reliance on “carbon-free” energy. The bill sets a goal of zero-carbon energy meeting 60 percent of statewide electricity needs by 2030 and 100 percent by 2045

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has proposed setting a 2040, 100 percent zero-carbon electricity goal for the Empire State. “Amidst the Trump administration’s assault on the environment and in order to continue New York’s progress in the fight against climate change, Governor Cuomo is announcing New York’s Green New Deal, a nation-leading clean energy and jobs agenda that will put the state on a path to carbon neutrality across all sectors of New York’s economy,” the Governor’s Office stated.


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