C40, a climate-focused network of mayors of almost 100 large cities, and Google has announced the launch of a new 24/7 Carbon-Free Energy (CFE) for Cities program, aimed at enabling cities to run entirely on clean energy.
The new program will help develop and implement strategies, practices and tools to enable cities to achieve 24/7 carbon-free energy (CFE) and support cities seeking to lead in the energy transition.
Initial pilot cities include London, Copenhagen and Paris, and should create scalable models for other cities around the world to do the same. Each city will continue to participate in the C40 Renewable Energy Accelerator and work to address key challenges around the implementation of carbon-free energy systems.
Focus areas will include matching energy demand for municipal operations to times when renewable generators, such as wind or solar, are most abundant. And expanding battery storage capability along with mini-grids which rely on their own sources of energy generation and operate independently of the national grid. Just switch
“The main cause of the climate emergency is fossil fuels, so I’m calling on cities around the world to join London and commit to rapidly phasing out their use,” said Sadiq Khan, C40 chair and Mayor of London, “this partnership with Google is another crucial step in phasing out fossil fuels, reducing carbon emissions and building a better, greener London for everyone.”
In order to help facilitate their transition to carbon-free energy, the C40 is collaborating with Google to provide expertise based on its own progress in the area. The company will also provide funding of $900,000 for the program.
Google has made significant progress against its decarbonisation goals. In 2007, it became carbon-neutral, and in 2017, it was the first company of its size to match its annual electricity use with renewable energy. Today, the company is the largest annual corporate purchaser of renewable energy in the world and is well on the way to achieving its 2030 goal.
In 2020, the search giant set the target to achieve ‘around the clock’ carbon-free energy across its operations, including data centres and offices worldwide by 2030. It is this experience that Google will use, sharing best practices from its journey by providing data and technology along the way.
“We’ve always known that we cannot achieve this goal alone, and we believe cities have a critical role to play in driving the systems-level changes that are needed to deliver a carbon-free energy future.” said Caroline Golin, Global Head of Energy Market Development and Policy at Google.
Despite cities covering only 2% of the world’s surface, they consume almost 78% of the world’s energy and produce more than 60% of greenhouse gas emissions, thus making them the predominant area for nations looking to achieve their net zero goals.
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