Sydney is now powered by 100 percent renewable energy.
The city’s Lord Mayor Clover Moore made the announcement in a video posted to Twitter on July 1.
“Taking action on climate change has been a major priority for the city since 2008. So it is very exciting here in 2020 to say today the city is powered by 100 percent renewable electricity,” she said.
Lord Mayor Moore explained that the City of Sydney, the central borough of the greater metropolitan area, negotiated a $60 million, ten-year contract with Flow Power to provide the city with 100 percent renewable energy.
Sydney will now use locally-sourced clean energy from a wind farm in Glen Innes. It will also use solar farms in Shoalhaven and Wagga Wagga. According to the Lord Mayor, the switch will save the city $500,000 each year over the next decade. It will also reduce emissions by 20,000 tons each year.
“So it means, while the city is making a significant contribution to addressing climate change and getting emissions down, we are also at the same time providing jobs in regional New South Wales that will contribute to that Just Transition to renewable energy away from coal and fossil fuel,” she explained.
All of Sydney’s operations will be run entirely on renewable sources of energy.
“We have shown that emissions-reducing renewable-use at scale is not only possible, it’s also good for job growth and good for the city’s finances. I hope all governments are watching on and will follow,” the Lord Mayor said in a statement.
Regions Ditch Fossil Fuels
Fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas are non-renewable sources of energy. They are the product of million-year-old decayed animals and plants that have been converted into sources of energy from high levels of heat and pressure within the earth’s crust. The process of extracting them from the earth is incredibly damaging.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): “the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions from human activities in the United States [stems] from burning fossil fuels for electricity, heat, and transportation.”
A number of cities and countries have already ditched fossil fuels in favor of renewable sources energy as a result.
On the same day that Sydney revealed it had switched to renewable energy, Adelaide announced its council-owned properties will also run entirely on renewable energy. The Australian city also partnered with Flow Power.
In April, Austria revealed it had closed its last-remaining coal-fired power plant. The country aims to transition to 100 percent renewable energy by 2030.
Sydney has been carbon neutral since 2007. The city now plans to reduce emissions by 70 percent by 2030. This goal is now likely to be accomplished in 2024 due to the city’s switch to renewable energy.