100% Renewable Energy

Credit: ESB Professional/Shutterstock

Burning oil, gas and coal has not only polluted our air, water and land for decades; now it’s changing our climate even faster than scientists predicted it would. We can have healthier communities and a livable future for kids growing up today, but to get there, we first need to transform the way we produce and consume energy.

That's why, alongside our national network, we’re calling on communities, colleges and universities, corporations and other businesses, and our state governments to commit to 100% renewable energy. 

It’s a big, bold goal, one that would make America a world leader in the race toward a cleaner, healthier future — and it’s a goal that’s 100% possible. 


Leading the way forward

Consider: Companies ranging from Apple, Google and Facebook to General Motors, Johnson & Johnson and Coca Cola have already committed to going 100% renewable. So have cities like Rochester, Minn., San Diego, Georgetown, Texas, St. Petersburg, Fla., Greensburg, Kan., and Burlington, Vt. And so have universities from Colorado State University to Cornell.

State governments in California and Massachusetts have introduced bills that would require their states to achieve 100% renewable electricity by 2045 and 2050, respectively.

The best part is, the more cities, colleges and companies that go renewable, the faster wind and solar prices keep falling throughout the country — making it even easier for more to achieve 100% renewable energy.

Credit: Giselle Turner

Going 100% renewable is 100% possible

Solar power has tripled in America in just the last two years — with a new home or business going solar every one and a half minutes. It took 40 years for us to get to 1 million solar installations in the U.S. in 2016. Now we’re on track to add another 1 million new solar installations in just two years.

In many states, wind power is now cheaper than gas or coal. Clean energy continues to grow quickly, with prices dropping lower than even the most optimistic industry predictions of just a few years ago.

But we can do more, and we must do more to stave off the worst effects of climate change. 

Credit: Deepwater Wind

We need to keep building momentum

Recent actions in Washington, D.C., have threatened to slow down and even reverse the progress we’ve made so far.

It’s time to stop letting some slow-moving politicians drag their feet.

It’s time to urge our communities, our colleges and universities, our corporations and businesses, and our state governments to step up and lead.

Join our call, and help your community go 100% renewable.

We need to build a movement. The more people who join our call for 100% renewable power, the more local, state and corporate leaders will step up and take action. And we need more campuses, more communities and more companies to commit to 100% renewable. It will make a difference now and get us on the right track for the future.   

Credit: Adam Perri

Why wait?

Once, we were told that the pollution that came from burning oil, gas and coal was the price we had to pay for progress. Those days are over — especially since we know that burning fossil fuels is changing our climate and leaving our children with an uncertain future.

Scientists say we must stop burning virtually all fossil fuels by 2050 in order to spare kids growing up today from the devastating impacts of climate change.

And why should we wait?

Why wait for healthier communities with cleaner air and water when we can have them today?

Why wait until it’s impossible to leave the kids we know and love a safer, healthier tomorrow?

Why wait, when we can start changing the conversation about how we produce and consume energy — so it’s no longer a question of whether we’ll get to 100% renewable power, but how fast?

Why wait, when America has the responsibility, the ingenuity and the will to start leading the world to a 100% renewable future right now?

Credit: Steven Gilbert

We’ve got the power

We’re ready for this. Our national network has done a lot to promote solar, wind and energy efficiency on the state and local levels. We’ve won clean energy policies, from pro-solar initiatives to clean cars programs to renewable energy standards in 22 states, all of which are driving down the costs of wind and solar, and reducing carbon pollution.

With renewable energy, we can have healthier communities right now and a more liveable future for kids growing up today. Together, we can do this. A 100% renewable future based on 100% American-made energy is 100% possible. And it starts now.  

Credit: Peter Kirkeskov Rasmussen via Flickr, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Issue updates

News Release | Environment America Research & Policy Center

As electric cars revolutionize the vehicle market, new study helps cities address infrastructure and parking challenges

With electric vehicles (EVs) hitting U.S. streets in record numbers, a new study by Environment America Research & Policy Center, PennEnvironment Research and Policy Center and Frontier Group highlights best practices to help local officials make their cities as EV-friendly as possible. The new report, “Plugging In: Readying America’s Cities for the Arrival of Electric Vehicles,” includes local and state data about the projected number of electric cars expected on the road in coming years, and how cities can accommodate these new EVs with enough places to park and recharge.

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment America Research & Policy Center

Plugging In

The adoption of large numbers of electric vehicles (EVs) offers many benefits for cities, including cleaner air and the opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Electric vehicles are far cleaner than gasoline-powered cars, with lower greenhouse gas emissions and lower emissions of the pollutants that contribute to smog and particulate matter.

> Keep Reading
News Release | Environment New York Research and Policy Center

Progress on Energy Storage Can Expedite New York’s Shift to Clean Energy

People have known for decades that virtually unlimited energy resources like solar and wind energy are cleaner and healthier than energy produced by dirty fuels. But, utilities and consumers occasionally express concern about the variability and dependability of those renewable sources. Those concerns are fading with the emergence of game-changing energy storage technologies. According to a new white paper released today by Environment New York, the rapid growth of less expensive wind and solar energy and the plummeting costs of energy storage have led to a six-fold increase in energy storage capacity (excluding pumped hydropower) over the past decade.  

“As renewable energy production rises, energy storage is increasingly becoming a ‘go-to’ option for utilities, businesses and homeowners,” said Heather Leibowitz, Director of Environment New York. "But many people are still unaware that it’s ready for prime time. We need to educate our policymakers about how the smart use of energy storage can make our transition to clean, renewable energy possible.”

> Keep Reading
News Release

The College Campus of the Future: Fueled by the 100% Renewable Energy

Today, Environment New York Research and Policy Center, touting the leadership role that colleges and universities must play in the clean energy revolution, unveiled a 10 point plan to guide campuses toward 100 percent renewable energy. Renewable Energy 101: Ten Tools for Moving your Campus to 100% Clean Energy, includes a series of factsheets highlighting 10 key tools to help colleges in New York with building a 100 percent clean, renewable energy system. 

“Colleges and universities across the country are situated to lead the charge in the transition to a 100 percent clean energy future,” said Heather Leibowitz, Director of Environment New York. “Colleges have the ability and the know-how to lead by taking bold steps to shift to clean energy and eliminate pollution from energy use. We hope that the ten point plan laid out in these fact sheets can help.” 

> Keep Reading
Report | Environment New York


America has enough renewable energy potential from the sun and wind to power the nation several times over. Studies of the electricity system suggest that high penetrations of renewable energy are possible using technologies available today at costs that society can afford.

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