“The ‘Crossroads of the West’ can also be known as one of America’s ‘Solar Stars’,” said Emma Searson, Go Solar Campaign advocate with Environment America Research & Policy Center. “Salt Lake City’s use of solar energy sets an example for the rest of the country.”
Salt Lake City ranked ahead of Los Angeles and just behind Albuquerque, New Mexico, for megawatts of solar energy capacity per capita as of year-end 2018. The city has used solar energy to protect public health by combating local air pollution and reduce global warming emissions as part of its commitment to achieving 100 percent renewable electricity city wide by 2032.
“We are thrilled to see Salt Lake City listed among the solar energy leaders in Shining Cities,” said Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski. “Sustained development of solar resources is an essential pillar of our efforts to address climate change. Powering homes and businesses with clean, renewable energy creates jobs, reduces pollution, and offers stable electricity rates. I’m proud to see so many of our community members invest in a clean energy future!”
In addition to the annual rankings, the report examined national solar power in major cities over the past six years. The analysis found that from 2013 to 2018, solar energy capacity more than doubled in 45 of 57 of America’s largest cities. Solar energy capacity more than quadrupled in Salt Lake City during this time, according to the report.
“Each year we harness more and more of the enormous solar energy potential across the country,” said Searson. “We still have a long way to go, but leaders like Mayor Biskupski are taking the steps necessary to power more homes, schools and businesses with clean energy from the sun.”
This year’s Shining Cities survey ranks 69 of the nation’s major cities by solar energy capacity. Honolulu ranks first overall for solar energy capacity per capita, while Los Angeles places No. 1 in total solar energy capacity installed. Regional leaders for solar capacity per capita were Burlington, Vt. in the Northeast; Washington, D.C. in the South Atlantic; San Antonio in the South Central region; Indianapolis in the North Central region; Las Vegas in the Mountain region and Honolulu in the Pacific region.