I believe that renewable energy is one of the most important things to be focusing on right now as individuals and as a country. While I firmly believe everyone should have their own source of renewable energy for their homestead (so that the government can’t charge you for something naturally occurring – call me a hippie), cities and hopefully someday soon entire countries that run on pure renewable energy are of immense importance. This guarantees that not only does your home run on natural energy, but that every store or restaurant you step foot into will be running on clean energy.
There are countless ways to obtain energy from things other than fossil fuels like hydro energy and solar energy; here are some cities in the United States that are already running on mostly (or entirely!) naturally derived energy.
The city of Burlington in Vermont was the first city of a substantial size in the United States to commit to running off of renewable energy. In 2014, this dream became a reality. This is also the town that Bernie Sanders was once the mayor of, so it isn’t shocking that the city takes sustainability seriously. The town of Burlington runs mostly off of hydro energy.
Greensburg was remade after a tornado in 2007 destroyed almost all of the town’s structures and damaged the rest. Although the town is small, it runs 100% on renewable energy and serves as a huge inspiration. The city has rebuilt itself from the ground up to be a sustainable town. From the tornado that forced the city to be rebuilt to the turbines that now power it – the city runs much off of wind energy.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Las Vegas does not yet run on 100% renewable energy (despite some misconceptions with news outlets); however, city-owned buildings and things such as street lights are run by renewable energy. With how large and prominent the city of Las Vegas is this is a huge milestone in the progression towards worldwide usage of renewable energy. Hopefully, the usage of renewable energy will continue to spread throughout Las Vegas and other large cities will make the effort as well! Especially in cities where the sun shines almost constantly, renewable energy is right there & we should be using it.
The popular ski destination of Aspen achieved 100% green energy usage in 2015. In 2014 they were already up to 80% clean energy but close the gap in only a year after starting their journey in 2007. This also proves that green energy can be achieved in any climate since there are multiple ways to use natural resources for green energy.
There are also cities commonly referred to as ecovillages or eco-communities, and they’re exactly what they sound like; small city-like groups of people that aim to create eco-friendly homesteads and communities! The difference between these & other cities is mostly the size difference, but also the fact that these communities focus entirely on sustainable practices. This includes not only the aspect of renewable energy but sustainable food practices, water usage, composting, and so much more.
Some of the ecovillages that are up & running (or soon to be) in the US include:
- Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage in Missouri
- Earthaven Ecovillage in North Carolina
- Ecovillage at Ithaca in New York
- Living Roots Ecovillage in Indiana
- Twin Oaks Community in Virginia
- Laytonville Ecovillage in California
I actually desire to live in one of these eco-communities but also hope more than anything that I live to see the day where the whole country, the whole world, is run by green energy and puts environmental sustainability first as a priority rather than a second thought. Until then, we have to make green choices for ourselves by ourselves. Supporting green cities and outwardly voicing our opinions surrounding renewable energy and green living as a whole is the best way to make a difference and work towards the reality of a green future, which is what this blog is all about.
Categories: Green Living