The cities of Fitchburg and Monona passed 100% Clean Energy Resolutions in February and March. They join Middleton and Madison that passed their 100% resolutions in 2018 (EnergyOnWI News, July 2018) and 2017 respectively (EnergyOnWI News March 2017). The three small cities, ranging in population from 8,100 – 29,500, are each Energy Independent Communities along with the City of Madison and Dane County. All five passed resolutions in 2009 and 2010 to generate 25 percent of their energy locally by 2025 for government operations. Their 100% clean energy resolutions recognize the impacts of climate change on their communities now and in the future and include resilience planning. They maintain the 25 x ’25 target as the first milestone, while each take a slightly different schedule with additional targets and approaches to when and where they will get to 100 percent.
These municipalities are the first to bolster Dane County’s efforts to implement deep decarbonization county-wide. Dane County convened a Climate Coalition with many working groups in 2018 and 2019 and is using a FACETS modeling to determine the least cost optimization of the dozens of scenarios generated. The County aims to release their Climate Action Plan this fall. In the municipal working group, local governments shared their programs, challenges and needs. UW-Extension worked with them on their 100% clean energy resolutions, and, the county provided assistance in obtaining grant funds for comprehensive clean energy planning for seven municipalities.
The county recognizes they won’t reach their goals unless the majority of municipalities and their residents and businesses take action to increase their energy efficiency significantly and transition to renewable energy for buildings and transportation. Miiddleton, FItchburg and Monona will work in concert with their utility, Madison Gas & Electric, each other and the county to help achieve their clean energy and resilience goals.