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Louisville becomes first Ky. city to pass renewable-energy resolution; goal is 100 percent in 20 years

The Louisville Metro Council has voted to commit to reaching 100 percent renewable energy use for city operations within the next two decades.

According to the resolution, the city will work to shift public transit and other operations to run on clean forms of energy, such as electricity and solar power.

Louisville is the first Kentucky city to commit to reaching 100% renewable energy for its city operations by 2040. (Photo from Adobe Stock, via PNS)

The Metro Council vote was 15-4 in support of the resolution.

Gretchen Milliken, director of advanced planning and sustainability for Louisville Metro, said the city already has been focused on reducing its carbon-emissions footprint.

“We have done an emissions-reduction plan. We’re in the last phases of pulling together our climate adaptation plan,” Milliken explained. “And these layout strategies for our city, of how we are going to be reducing our emissions — but also, strategies of how we’re going to be dealing with the climate change that is inevitably coming our way.”

She added that Louisville’s summer temperatures are projected to rise between seven and 12 degrees in the next half-century.

Drew Foley, group chair of the Sierra Club’s Greater Louisville Group described the move as a step in the right direction but pointed out that a handful of U.S. cities already are generating all or most of the energy for city operations from clean and renewable sources.

“Louisville was the 160th city in the United States that has made that commitment,” Foley noted. “So, we’re pretty late to the game, actually.”

According to a 2016 Environmental Protection Agency report, Kentucky is likely to experience more extreme flooding, as well as longer periods of drought from climate change in the coming decades.

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