The Columbia City Council on Tuesday unanimously approved a resolution establishing a community-wide goal of transitioning to 100 percent clean and renewable energy by 2036.
“It’s up to us as leaders to creatively implement clean energy solutions for our cities across the nation,” Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin said. “It’s not merely an option now; it’s imperative. Cities, citizens and businesses can create new green economy jobs and can lead the transition away from fossil fuels to 100 percent clean and renewable energy. Columbia is taking action.”
Columbia represents the first city or town in South Carolina to commit to 100 percent renewable energy and the 36th city in the United States to make such a commitment. Columbia’s move to 100 percent renewable energy comes just two days after Sarasota, Florida became the 35th city in the country to adopt a goal of moving to 100 percent clean energy.
Benjamin is a co-chair of the Mayors for 100% Clean Energy initiative. In June, he issued a new mayoral proclamation endorsing a goal of powering Columbia entirely with clean and renewable energy. The mayor also introduced a landmark resolution to the U.S. Conference of Mayors that would formally establish support from the nation’s mayors for the goal of 100 percent renewable energy in cities nationwide. The resolution will be voted on at this weekend’s U.S. Conference of Mayors annual meeting in Miami Beach.
“By transitioning to 100 percent renewable energy, Columbia is charting the course for cities across the country to move away from fossil fuels to cleaner, more affordable sources of energy like wind and solar,” Chris Hall, chair of the Sierra Club’s South Carolina chapter, said.
Columbia, SC, USA