Del Mar, California
Several cities in California are on the track of providing their energy 100% from renewables in the near future. Being the second city in San Diego County to do so, Del Mar (about 4,161 inhabitants in 2015) announced to become independent from fossil fuels in electricity sector by 2035. Therefore, the city council has published an action plan about how to achieve the city’s target.
Apart from goals like reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 15 percent by 2020 and by 50 percent by 2035, the plan also intends to raise the number of people going by bike or foot as well as planting three times more trees than already exist in the city’s area to regulate the micro climate in Del Mar.
The officials of the city mentioned that the decision to make an action plan was based on the forecasted impacts of the climate change and thereby the rise of the sea level. As a coastal city, Del Mar would be totally affected by these impacts, among others, by the increasing number of extreme weather events.
According to the data from the city’s climate action plan (executive summery, page S-1), electricity is responsible for 36 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions in Del Mar. Second is the transportation with about 17 percent. Therefore, Del Mar sets its focus on reducing these two. Refitting buildings to conserve energy and upgrading them with solar panels are examples of how to accelerate the project. Furthermore, the city wants to form a ‘community choice energy plan’ to be able to negotiate with suppliers of renewable energies directly and further to set rates for the customers by its own.
The main difference between San Diego’s plan to achieve 100% renewable energy and Del Mar’s one is the fact of developing a guideline instead of making a contract to enforce the conversion. Correspondingly, the action plan will not have legally binding requirements.
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Wednesday, August 24th, 2016