Solar and map image
Solar panels being installed on the roof of Traverse Heights Elementary School in Traverse City (photo courtesy of Kate Madigan).

Traverse City, Michigan, may be small, but it has set a big goal: to power all city operations with 100 percent clean energy within four years.

Madigan: “That includes city buildings, streetlights, wastewater treatment plants … all of the operations of the city will be powered by renewable energy.”

That’s Kate Madigan, of the Michigan Climate Action Network. The organization joined other groups and citizens to demand action by their local officials. They persuaded the city commission to adopt the 100 percent goal.

That put Traverse City alongside nearly 20 other leading U.S. cities, large and small, all with the same goal of 100 percent clean energy.

Achieving the goal will require improving energy efficiency, which will reduce air pollution and save money that the city government can use for other important needs.

'If we can do it in Traverse City, anybody can do it - every community could do this.' Click To Tweet

Since the resolution passed, Madigan says she’s heard from other cities looking to follow their lead.

Madigan: “If we can do it in Traverse City, anybody can do it – every community could do this. It really makes me feel hopeful that it will be contagious, and that more and more communities will continue to commit to a hundred percent renewable energy.”

Reporting credit: Rosie Simon/ChavoBart Digital Media.
Image graphic: Created by David McCarthy.

Topics: Energy