The Georgetown University Energy Prize, a $5 million incentive competition to reduce America’s energy consumption, announced a list of 52 communities who have been selected to advance to the Quarterfinalist round of the competition.
Each of the 52 communities overcame a substantial hurdle to make it into this next stage of the competition. All of them had to assemble a team, outline a plan, and secure signed commitments of collaboration from their local government, electric and natural gas utilities, and a community based organization. Most of them went even further – GUEP received letters of support from hundreds of local organizations including homeowners associations, a local airport, a golf course, highs schools, colleges, church groups, local businesses, and even a brewery.
“The enthusiasm in these communities is contagious,” said Dr. Francis Slakey, Executive Director of the Prize. “This is the first time so many governments, utilities, and community groups will be working together to reduce energy consumption.”
The competing communities hail from all points of the compass — from Alaska to Virginia, from Minnesota to Arkansas — and comprise a representative sample of small- and medium-sized cities and counties. The list includes communities who are:
- brand new to energy efficiency, launching first-of-their-kind efforts to reduce energy consumption; and
- seasoned pros, working to squeeze the maximum efficiency out of every corner of their community.
These communities are motivated by a variety of factors:
- some pay the highest energy prices in the country and are looking to save both
- homeowners and taxpayers significant amounts of money;
- many have pledged specific and substantial reductions in carbon emissions;
- others are working to be among the nation’s first net-zero carbon communities.
In total, over the two years of the GUEP competition, these communities have the potential to save more than $1 billion in energy costs and cut millions of tons of CO2 emissions. And that is just the beginning.
The Georgetown University Energy Prize will identify innovative, replicable, scalable solutions that can be implemented by cities and counties across the country, helping America re-think the way we use energy.
Dr. Slakey remarked that, “the communities we selected are leaders in energy efficiency who will develop innovative approaches that will inspire and enable others to follow in their footsteps”.
The following 52 communities have been selected to advance to the Quarterfinalist phase of the
Georgetown University Energy Prize:
Fairbanks, AK Huntsville, AL
Calhoun County, AR Berkeley, CA
Chula Vista, CA Claremont, CA
Davis, CA Fremont, CA
Irvine, CA Palo Alto, CA
San Mateo, CA Sunnyvale, CA
Aspen, CO Brighton, CO
Fort Collins, CO Winter Park, FL
Dubuque, IA Urbana, IL
Monroe County, IN Cambridge, MA
Takoma Park, MD Farmington Hills and Farmington, MI
Holland, MI Houghton County, MI
Duluth, MN Bates County, MO
Columbia, MO Fargo, ND
Somersworth, NH Atlantic City, NJ
Athens County, OH Oberlin, OH
Bend, OR Corvallis, OR
Providence, RI Chattanooga, TN
Knoxville, TN Kearns Township, UT
Park City/Summit County, UT Arlington County, VA
Blacksburg, VA Charlottesville, VA
Roanoke, VA Montpelier, VT
South Burlington, VT Waterbury/Duxbury, VT
Anacortes, WA Bellevue, WA
Bellingham, WA San Juan County, WA
Walla Walla, W
Over the next few months these communities will fine tune their energy efficiency plans. Then, on January 1st of 2015, they will go head-to-head to see who can lead the way in energy efficiency.
About Georgetown University Energy Prize
The Georgetown University Energy Prize aims to rethink America’s energy use by harnessing the ingenuity and community spirit of towns and cities all across America. Over the course of a two year period, the Prize will challenge small- to medium-size towns, cities, and counties to rethink their energy use, and implement creative strategies to increase efficiency. To compete for the Prize, local governments, residents, utilities, and others will need to work together to demonstrate success in sustainably reducing energy consumption.