Atlanta Aims For 100 Percent Clean Energy

Solar panels cover cars parked in a lot nearby Centennial Olympic Park, Tuesday, July 2, 2013, in Atlanta. The Georgia chapter of Americans For Prosperity, founded by billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch, wants Georgia's utility regulators to reject a solar energy plan in Georgia. But an Associated Press review ahead of a vote on the issue finds that it has used misleading figures to build its case. (AP Photo/Jaime Henry-White)
Credit Jaime Henry-White / Associated Press
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Doubling down on its reputation for promoting sustainability, Atlanta is pledging to convert to 100 percent clean energy in the coming decades.

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According to this week’s Atlanta Business Chronicle, under a resolution the city council passed unanimously May 1, all city government operations must completely run on renewable energy by 2025, while the entire city — including the private sector — must convert to renewable power by 2035.

The council resolution calls for Atlanta’s sustainability division to develop a plan by January for achieving 100 percent clean energy by the deadlines the measure sets. The plan must include interim milestones, budget estimates, financing mechanisms and recommendations on the percentage of renewable power to be generated locally.

Atlanta’s success could depend on Georgia Power’s capacity. While Atlanta-based Georgia Power and parent Southern Co. were initially slow to add renewable energy sources to their respective portfolios, Georgia Power now derives nearly 25 percent of its generating capacity from emission-free sources, including nuclear, solar, wind and hydropower, Georgia Power spokesman Jacob Hawkins said.

Dave Williams covers government for Atlanta Business Chronicle. Urvaksh Karkaria covers technology for Atlanta Business Chronicle.