After President Trump indicated he would withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Accord, a group of nearly 200 mayors, including Mayor Frank G. Jackson, joined the Mayors National Climate Action Agenda and committed themselves to the climate goals outlined in the agreement.
One of those goals is to power the city with 100 percent renewable electricity by 2050. Meeting this goal is critical to reducing the city’s greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050. Greenhouse gas emissions largely result from burning fossil fuels and, once released, get trapped in the Earths' atmosphere and contribute to the further warming of the planet. Urban centers, like Cleveland, produce 80 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions in North America.
As such, alternative forms of energy — including solar, wind, and biofuels, are being investigated and implemented — along with encouraging increased energy efficiency in building design and home weatherization, and the exploration of sustainable modes of transportation in an effort to meet this goal. How is Cleveland progressing so far? What initiatives are underway — and are they proving successful? And how can we ensure these efforts don't result in an increased "energy burden" on the poor while also creating jobs for those that needs them most?