Quantcast

20 Cities Shining Brightest With Solar Energy

Business

Environment America scanned the nation to find out which cities are shining the brightest when it comes to solar energy.

Those cities are doing more than just leading the way—the top 20 cities contain more solar power today than the entire country had just six years ago.

Not surprisingly, you'll see plenty of California cities in the top 20 featured in Environment America's report, Shining Cities At the Forefront of America's Solar Energy Revolution, released this week in several variations by the organization's various state arms around the country.

“California cities are leaders in creating solar energy capacity,” California Sen. Marty Block, D-San Diego, said in an Environment California statement. “Of the top 20 American cities listed for this clean and safe energy alternative, California has five cities ranked in the top 12—Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco and Sacramento. It’s leadership that means a cleaner environment, better jobs and a stronger economy."

The report also includes listings of cities split into categories that extend from "beginners" to "stars." It should be no surprise that states with politicians that tried passing anti-renewable legislation don't contain cities that would even qualify as "beginners." The fact that states like California have federal and state politicians willing to stand behind solar energy certainly aids in its deployment.

“Solar energy is renewable and clean, which is why I’m such an advocate for its role in our national energy portfolio,” U.S. Rep. Scott Peters, D-CA, said. “The solar industry is creating jobs, including more than 675 in my district alone and powering our economy toward a more sustainable future. I’m proud that San Diego and California are leading the way as an example for the rest of the country.”

Some cities, like New York, were pleased with their standing, but look forward to doing more.

“New York City is home to a wealth of industries and it is crucial that it continues to lead the way to nurture and build the solar industry,” said David Sandbank, vice president of New York Solar Energy Industries Association. “With the support of our state and local government officials and the creation of the NY Sun-Initiative, we are well on our way to achieving this goal.

"It is very important that we continue our momentum and create more solar jobs while reducing our carbon footprint and dependence on traditional electrical power.”

In Ohio, where legislation to freeze renewable energy standards indefinitely is on the table, some desperately want to deploy more clean energy. Cleveland and Columbus were considered "beginners" by Environment America, while Cincinnati is considered a "builder," ranking 24th in the nation.

“We’ve made progress here in Columbus, but we’ve just begun,” said Ragan Davis of Environment Ohio. “By committing to bold goals and putting strong policies in place, we can make Columbus shine as a national leader and reap the environmental and economic benefits of the solar revolution.”

——–

YOU ALSO MIGHT LIKE

10 States That Led Solar Energy to a Monumental Year

World's Largest Solar Thermal Plant Opens For Business

National Consortium Eyes 20,000 Solar School Installations by 2020

——–

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

By Jennifer Molidor, PhD

Climate change, habitat loss and pollution are overwhelming our planet. Thankfully, these enormous threats are being met by a bold new wave of environmental activism.

Read More Show Less

President Donald Trump mocked water-efficiency standards in new constructions last week. Trump said, "People are flushing toilets 10 times, 15 times, as opposed to once. They end up using more water. So, EPA is looking at that very strongly, at my suggestion." Trump asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for a federal review of those standards since, he claimed with no evidence, that they are making bathrooms unusable and wasting water, as NBC News reported.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
(L) Rushing waters of Victoria Falls at Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park, Zimbabwe pictured in January 2018. Edwin Remsberg / VW PICS / UIG / Getty Images (R) Stark contrast of Victory Falls is seen on Nov. 13, 2019 after drought has caused a decline. ZINYANGE AUNTONY / AFP / Getty Images

The climate crisis is already threatening the Great Barrier Reef. Now, another of the seven natural wonders of the world may be in its crosshairs — Southern Africa's iconic Victoria Falls.

Read More Show Less

Monsanto's former chairman and CEO Hugh Grant speaks about "The Coming Agricultural Revolution" on May 17, 2016. Fortune Brainstorm E / Flickr

By Carey Gillam

Former Monsanto Chairman and CEO Hugh Grant will have to testify in person at a St. Louis-area trial set for January in litigation brought by a cancer-stricken woman who claims her disease was caused by exposure to the company's Roundup herbicide and that Monsanto covered up the risks instead of warning consumers.

Read More Show Less
A volcano erupts on New Zealand's Whakaari/White Island on Dec. 9, 2019. Michael Schade / Twitter

A powerful volcano on Monday rocked an uninhabited island frequented by tourists about 30 miles off New Zealand's coast. Authorities have confirmed that five people died. They expect that number to rise as some are missing and police officials issued a statement that flights around the islands revealed "no signs of life had been seen at any point,", as The Guardian reported.

"Based on the information we have, we do not believe there are any survivors on the island," the police said in their official statement. "Police is working urgently to confirm the exact number of those who have died, further to the five confirmed deceased already."

The eruption happened on New Zealand's Whakaari/White Island, an islet jutting out of the Bay of Plenty, off the country's North Island. The island is privately owned and is typically visited for day-trips by thousands of tourists every year, according to The New York Times.

Michael Schade / Twitter

At the time of the eruption on Monday, about 50 passengers from the Ovation of Seas were on the island, including more than 30 who were part of a Royal Caribbean cruise trip, according to CNN. Twenty-three people, including the five dead, were evacuated from the island.

The eruption occurred at 2:11 pm local time on Monday, as footage from a crater camera owned and operated by GeoNet, New Zealand's geological hazards agency, shows. The camera also shows dozens of people walking near the rim as white smoke billows just before the eruption, according to Reuters.

Police were unable to reach the island because searing white ash posed imminent danger to rescue workers, said John Tims, New Zealand's deputy police commissioner, as he stood next to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern in a press conference, as The New York Times reported. Tims said rescue workers would assess the safety of approaching the island on Tuesday morning. "We know the urgency to go back to the island," he told reporters.

"The physical environment is unsafe for us to return to the island," Tims added, as CNN reported. "It's important that we consider the health and safety of rescuers, so we're taking advice from experts going forward."

Authorities have had no communication with anyone on the island. They are frantically working to identify how many people remain and who they are, according to CNN.

Geologists said the eruption is not unexpected and some questioned why the island is open to tourism.

"The volcano has been restless for a few weeks, resulting in the raising of the alert level, so that this eruption is not really a surprise," said Bill McGuire, emeritus professor of geophysical and climate hazards at University College London, as The Guardian reported.

"White Island has been a disaster waiting to happen for many years," said Raymond Cas, emeritus professor at Monash University's school of earth, atmosphere and environment, as The Guardian reported. "Having visited it twice, I have always felt that it was too dangerous to allow the daily tour groups that visit the uninhabited island volcano by boat and helicopter."

The prime minister arrived Monday night in Whakatane, the town closest to the eruption, where day boats visiting the island are docked. Whakatane has a large Maori population.

Ardern met with local council leaders on Monday. She is scheduled to meet with search and rescue teams and will speak to the media at 7 a.m. local time (1 p.m. EST), after drones survey the island, as CNN reported.