- The Orlando City Commission this week unanimously approved a resolution to transition the city to 100% clean and renewable energy by 2050. All municipal operations will be powered by renewables by 2030.
- According to the Sierra Club, Orlando is now the largest city in Florida to make that commitment and joins more than three dozen other cities nationwide that have committed to carbon-free energy.
- In June, the U.S. Conference of Mayors approved a resolution supporting a 100% renewable energy goal by 2035, and launched the Ready for 100 campaign to support the utilization of more clean power. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer was one of those signing onto the pledge.
Home to Disney World, Universal Studios and other major tourist destinations, the city of Orlando envisions a future where all of its energy needs will be met by renewable power.
The city council's resolution says Orlando wants to expand on its commitments, "in cooperation with other local governments, private organizations, and individuals, to achieve 100% of all electricity consumed in the City of Orlando to come from renewable energy resources and associated technologies by the year 2050."
Orlando has a history of clean energy ambitions: in 2010, the city was designated as a “Solar America City” and in 2016 it was designated as a “SolSmart City” by the U.S. Department of Energy. Also last year, Orlando enabled the Property Assessed Clean Energy and the Solar & Energy Loan Fund financing programs to assist home and business owners with clean energy upgrades.
The League of Women Voters of Orange County has been pushing for greater sustainability efforts in the region and hailed the move.
“Today, Orlando takes its place on the regional, state and national stage as a forward-thinking city committed to a healthier, sustainable future,” LWVOC Co-President Carol Davis said in a statement. “This is a first, important step, and we plan to continue to support and encourage the city to follow with concrete measures that solidify this commitment.”
There is rapidly growing interest in renewable energy being shown by municipal governments. A joint survey by the U.S. Conference of Mayors and the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions found almost 70% of responding cities already generate or purchase some clean energy, more than 20% are considering the option, and more than 60% are buying low-emission vehicles for fleets.