Where should Austin get its energy? Well, that’s what the city is trying to figure out.
Every few years, the city puts together an update to the Austin Energy Resource, Generation, and Climate Protection Plan, which basically decides where the utility will get its energy for about the next 10 years. That update process is going on right now and is being led by a citizen advisory group, called the Electric Utility Commission Resource Planning Working Group. The group is tasked with advising and making recommendations to City Council about the generation plan update. City Council will then make a final decision about the plan (as early as this spring/summer).
While it’s too early to know what recommendations might come out of this group, there are still opportunities for the public to get involved. The working group meetings are open to the public and often leave time for “Citizen Communication,” during which you can share your opinions specifically or more broadly about where Austin should be getting its energy.
Public Citizen, the Sierra Club’s Austin Environmental Justice Team (ATXEJ), and Climate Buddies are currently circulating a petition calling on City Council to ultimately approve an update to the generation plan that prioritizes wind and solar energy, as well as the retirement of Austin’s fossil fuel-powered energy sources. They’re also pushing for programs that make solar more accessible to the city’s low income residents. “We support a clean, just and affordable energy future,” the petition writes. More info>>