On Monday in Palo Alto, the Northern California city’s council members voted in favor of switching to 100% renewable energy sources, effective almost immediately. The city already owns all of its own utilities, making it significantly easier to put the new plan into action.
The fact that Palo Alto already gets 50% of its electricity from hydro-electric sources is another reason why it will be a breeze to achieve this goal. Over time, even a percentage of that will come from solar, wind, and renewable gas from landfills.
“Palo Alto has been a leader in reducing its carbon emissions,” said Mayor Greg Scharff in an interview with Palo Alto Patch. “When we realized we could achieve a carbon neutral electric supply right now, we were compelled to take action.” He added that he hopes to see these actions inspire other cities to make similar changes.
Wondering how much this will cost homeowners? Less than $3 more per year! No, that’s not a typo. According to the city’s Carbon Neutral Plan, the annual rate impact of the project will not exceed 0.15 cents per kilowatt hour.
Do you think this will inspire other cities around the world to make similar changes and start taking advantage of renewable resources? If anything, the cost is what should garner the most interest. If it’s cheap enough for other cities to make the change as well, then why not just do it?