Aspen, Colorado, the gentle and chilly tourist hub renowned for its ski slopes, is now the third city in the United States to consider itself fully powered by renewable resources.
As Go 100% Renewable Energy reports, the city will be running on 100% sustainable energy after 2015, an 84% increase from 2014. Aspen presently draws most of its energy from hydropower but has entered into a contract with wind farms in Nebraska and South Dakota to make its sustainability goal(s) a reality.
Because the mountainous area is especially vulnerable to rising global temperatures, the city decided to step up its sustainability efforts about ten years ago. The 2005 Canary Initiative sought to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to preserve the area's climate, its powdery snowfall being a major draw for tourists from around the world.
Said David Hornbacher, director of the city's Utilities and Environmental Initiatives:
"It was a very forward-thinking goal and truly remarkable achievement. This means we are powered by the forces of nature, predominantly water and wind with a touch of solar and landfill gas."
The spokespeople for Aspen's Sustainability and Utility department told the source that the biggest benefit to their residents was "setting an example for other communities to follow suit and do right by the environment." This monumental achievement will help reduce greenhouse gases and also provide a more stable electricity rate for consumers in the area. Win-win!