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Tempe collecting feedback on expansion of municipal renewable energy goals

Partnerships with ASU, APS and SRP can help the city achieve carbon neutral city operations

Post Date:01/11/2018 2:20 PM

A Tempe City Manager’s working group on the Municipal Renewable Energy Target is currently collecting feedback about adopting two new targets: a new renewable energy target of 100 percent municipal energy from renewable sources by 2035; and a goal of carbon neutral city operations by 2050.

Tempe is soliciting input on the city’s municipal energy policy at a public meeting, Wednesday, Jan. 17 at 6 p.m. at the Pyle Adult Recreation Center, 655 E. Southern Ave.  Staff will be able to explain the proposed goals and how they fit into Tempe's larger Climate Action Plan that will be developed over the next 18 months.

The forum will be facilitated by Dr. Lauren Withycombe Keeler of ASU’s School for the Future of Innovation in Society as a part of the ongoing collaboration between the City of Tempe and Arizona State University to build capacity for resilience and sustainability in Tempe. This work is funded by the Global Consortium for Sustainability Outcomes (GCSO). With GCSO support, Michele Crim, Climate and Resilience Manager for the City of Portland, will offer a keynote on city leadership and community involvement in energy policy and climate action planning.  

Comments are also being taken online at www.tempe.gov/forum. There are links for more information about the proposal and about carbon-neutrality and renewable energy in general. The forum question will be open through Wednesday, Jan. 24. The comments provided on the Tempe Forum and at the meeting will be incorporated into a final recommendation to bring to the full City Council for future consideration.

“With the knowledge and guidance of our energy staff and local stakeholders including ASU professors and students, environmental organizations, and the utilities, our working group is ready to bring forward a proposal for public feedback that I believe is not only good public policy, but makes a strong statement about the kind of government and the values we believe in here in Tempe,” said Councilmember Lauren Kuby, a working group member.

This policy is only for energy used in city operations such as buildings, street lights, and water operations. Current city policy seeks 20 percent of our municipal energy use to be produced by renewable sources. In 2018, with the completion of the solar power plant at the Johnny G. Martinez Water Treatment Plant, the city will produce over 4 megawatts (MW) of power and receive approximately 10 percent of its total energy use from six solar power plants on city property, and participation in several regional renewable energy programs. A policy for citywide carbon emissions and renewable energy will be determined during a later process to develop a Climate Action Plan.