Savannah, Georgia – On March 26, 2020, the City of Savannah, Georgia signed a resolution committing to transition to 100 percent clean, renewable electricity by 2035, and 100 percent renewable energy by 2050, thanks to efforts from the 100% Savannah Coalition.
The Climate Reality Project: Coastal Georgia Chapter spearheaded the 100% Savannah Coalition, which is comprised of faith groups, local businesses, and environmental justice organizations, including The Center for a Sustainable Coast, The Harambee House/Citizens for Environmental Justice, The Dogwood Alliance, The Unitarian Universalist Church of Savannah Green Team, Citizens for Clean Air, and Environment Georgia.
The coalition held three community events that demonstrated Savannah’s enthusiasm and readiness for an electricity and energy transition. The first, a march and rally in Forsyth Park in late-September 2019, drew around 1,000 people from all around the city. The chapter then held a forum on climate in mid-October, where commitment to fighting the climate crisis and support for a 100-percent resolution was discussed. These events culminated in a packed town hall in February 2020. Over 130 members of the Savannah community attended to discuss the resolution with coalition members and the newly elected city councilors and mayor.
The Climate Reality Project: Coastal Georgia Chapter Chair Kevin Ionno said, “The passage of the resolution was the culmination of a year's work that began right after our participation in the 2019 Atlanta training. I guess our inspiration was being in Atlanta and learning that Atlanta had made the commitment. We asked, ‘Why can't we do that?’ And we’re off! I can honestly say the motivation and leadership of The Climate Reality Project: Coastal Georgia Chapter drove the coalition.”
This achievement is the culmination of countless phone calls, emails, blog posts, public outreach, presentations, and meetings with key decision-makers and community members. Nick Deffley, the city’s sustainability director, was also a great source of support and advice throughout the process.
Savannah will be developing a clean-energy action plan over the next 18 months, and the chapter hopes to continue supporting the city as it enters the next stage of this process through the creation of a citizen’s advisory board.
We thank the entire Climate Reality Project: Coastal Georgia Chapter and 100% Savannah Coalition for their dedication to this fight.