Relatively easy places to start
- Adopt a resolution to get your community to 100% renewable energy by 2050 (or sooner). Sample ordinance: Pueblo, CO; Traverse City, MI; East Hampton, NY
- Minimize zoning and permitting costs for renewable energy systems. Sample ordinance: Lancaster, CA
- Replace all public lighting with LEDs. Sample ordinance: New York, NY. Examples: Oahu, Sioux Falls, New York
- Commit to developing local renewable energy to serve local energy needs. Sample ordinance: Taos, NM
- Put solar on every possible public building, and maximize energy efficiency of existing and future public buildings. Sample ordinance: San Francisco, CA; New York, NY. Other examples: Lancaster, CA; New Bedford, MA.
- Commit to electrification of city fleet vehicles. Sample ordinance: Austin, TX.
- Have the city host community solar projects for residents and businesses. Examples: Taylors Falls, MN; Minneapolis, MN
- Adopt the most efficient building energy code allowed by state law (where allowed). Examples: Boston, MA; Tucson, AZ; Babylon, NY; Boulder County, CO
We can go further
- Study and adopt community choice aggregation. Sample ordinance: Sonoma County, CA; San Mateo County, CA (to explore CCA); also see Marin County, CA; Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council, OH.
- Require solar installations on all new buildings. Sample ordinance: San Francisco, CA; Other examples: Lancaster, CA; Sebastopol, CA
- Require energy disclosure upon rental or sale of single-family housing. Sample ordinance: Austin, TX. Examples: All homes: Austin, TX; New construction + remodels: Boulder, CO; New construction: Santa Fe, NM; Energy bill disclosure: Chicago, IL; Montgomery County, MD
- Require energy disclosure upon rental or sale of multi-family housing. Sample ordinance: Minneapolis, MN. Examples: Austin, TX; Boston, MA; Minneapolis, MN; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; San Francisco, CA; Seattle, WA; Washington, DC
- Require minimum energy efficiency investment as part of rental licensing. Sample ordinance: Boulder, CO.
- Implement or increase utility franchise fee to finance energy savings programs. Sample ordinance: Edina, MN
For a map showing how states can help or hinder local clean energy action, see our Community Power Map
- Create a “stretch” building energy code that allows cities to go beyond the state minimum standard, or grant cities flexibility to set the most aggressive standards, Sample law: Massachusetts, Examples: Massachusetts, Texas, Arizona, Missouri, Idaho.
- Study the cost-effectiveness of inclusive financing for on-site energy efficiency and renewable energy. Sample law: Mitchell County, NC.
- Adopt community choice aggregation, allow communities to choose their electricity suppliers to save money and obtain more renewable energy. Sample law: California; Illinois. (OH, RI, NY, NJ, MA also have this)
- Create a community renewable energy policy that allows electric customers to collectively own and share the energy from a renewable energy project. Sample law: Minnesota. Examples: Minnesota, Maryland, Colorado