Vermont, First US City to Run 100 Percent on Sustainable Energy*
By Christina Sarich
With Fukushima radiation still raining down on us, fracking causing earthquakes in Dallas, TX and other cities, and petroleum-based energy polluting the air and waterways, it’s good to know that one US city is currently supplying 100% renewable, sustainable energy for all its residents’ electricity needs. Vermont, the same state that has successfully challenged the biotech industry by instituting GMO labeling laws, is also home to Burlington – where green energy powers life.
Vermont is known for socially conscious politics, and geographically hosting the first 100% sustainably-run city is a huge milestone, not only for residents of Burlington, but for all US cities – because it shows that sustainable energy is a possibility.
PBS recently reported on the city’s milestone in William Brangh’s PBS NewsHour. The city gets its energy primarily from wind farms, hydro-electric projects, and solar panels. You can see how Burlington achieved this monumental feat…
Norwhich, Vermont, is also trying to go 100% green with solar panels. 308 solar panels now supply half the city’s energy. The state actually provided a large portion of funding for the project through a grant, which is expected to pay for itself in less than 20 years.
Burlington, VA has also updated its story, and now gets more power from the sustainable grid than their residents actually use.
Avaaz recently sent a petition to the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-Moon, featuring the signatures of 2.2 million people. It requested that local, national, and international leaders make the transition to 100 percent renewable energy. Avaaz is currently aiming to get at least 100 cities around the world to join its campaign over the next year.
Other places on the planet aiming toward, or already running on 100% sustainable energy include:
- Aruba – a plan is in place for Aruba to run on 100% sustainable energy in just five more years.
- Oslo, Norway – is all about running on green energy, and having extra energy to spare. They also recycle their waste.
- Malmö, Sweden – everyone could learn a trick or two from Malmö. Most of the country’s electricity comes from nuclear and hydropower. Cities such as Malmö are contributing to the greening of Sweden with planned to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 25% between 2008 and 2012, far exceeding the 5% goal set by the Kyoto Protocol. Moreover, Malmö aims to have the entire municipality running on 100% renewable energy by 2030.