BOSTON -- This weekend at the annual U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting in Boston, local leaders from across the country will have a chance to show their support for a future powered by clean, renewable energy, as well as other measures to tackle climate change.
The mayors are expected to consider resolutions setting sights on 100 percent renewable energy in American cities, increasing wind power development on- and offshore, and asserting the role of mayors in upholding the Paris Agreement.
“Mayors are well-positioned to drive the benefits of clean, renewable energy to their communities,” said Bret Fanshaw, director of Environment America’s Go Solar Campaign. “When cities invest in saving energy and switching to solar and wind power, we reduce the pollution that harms our environment and impacts our health, and we help ensure a safer, healthier climate for our kids.”
Cities and their leaders have long been at the forefront of the transition to a clean energy future.
More than 70 U.S. cities and counties have previously set goals to repower themselves with 100 percent renewable energy. Earlier this year, 180 mayors signed a letter in support of solar power in their communities and across the country.
These commitments have been backed up by significant municipal action. As of 2017, the top 20 U.S. cities for solar energy had more solar installed than the entire country did in 2010.
At this weekend’s conference, Columbia, S.C. Mayor Steve Benjamin, the incoming president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, is sponsoring the resolution for “100% Renewable Energy in American Cities”; Mayor Jon Mitchell of New Bedford, Mass. is sponsoring the wind energy resolution; and Mayor Jackie Biskupski of Salt Lake City, Utah and many others are sponsoring the resolution supporting the role of mayors in combating climate change.
“These forward-thinking mayors have a vision for a world in which renewable energy powers our lives and protects our environment,” said Fanshaw. “In the absence of national leadership, our cities can and will lead the way toward a cleaner, safer, saner energy future.”