100% Renewable Energy Goal
In March 2020, the Lawrence City Commission adopted Ordinance 9744, establishing a goal of 100% clean, renewable energy by 2035.
The City of Lawrence will strive to achieve the use of 100% clean, renewable energy according to the following timeline:
- By 2025 for electricity in municipal operations.
- By 2035 for all energy sectors in municipal operations.
- By 2030 for electricity city-wide.
- By 2035 for all energy sectors city wide.
The development of strategies and actions helps to achieve these goals will be developed as a part of the upcoming Climate Action and Adaptation Plan.
Renewable energy projects on City buildings:
The City looks for opportunities to use free energy from the sun and wind wherever possible. Currently, we have:
- A 100 kW solar array at Fire Station #5 (19th and Stewart). This array offsets about 20% of that station’s electricity usage.
- A pilot project to demonstrate the use of solar energy to power parking lights. Just outside of City Hall, we installed a 25’ LED parking lot light, powered completely by solar energy.
- A 10 kW solar PV array at the Prairie Park Nature Center. This array generates electricity for the facility, and offsets about 17% of the building’s usage with free, clean energy from the sun.
Renewable energy policies for residents:
In 2013, our City Commission voted to reduce the building permit fees for installing solar PV or solar thermal projects in Lawrence. Previously, fees for a large solar PV array could have cost citizens over $1,000. The fee was reduced to a flat fee of $65 to reduce the fee barrier and to encourage our citizens to install solar.
The City works to save energy in our buildings and facilities. Saving energy helps us save money as well as reduce our impact on the environment.
Energy saving projects in City buildings:
- In 2016, the City hired an energy service company to do a complete energy audit of all city facilities. This audit helped identify ways the City could save energy.
- In February 2017, the City Commission approved $11.3 million in energy saving upgrades to City facilities. These projects will save $450,000 per year in energy savings and make our buildings more comfortable and functional.
- The projects included facilities managed by Public Works & Parks and Recreation:
- LED lighting retrofit in City buildings, parking garages, sports fields, and parks
- Upgrades to the heating and cooling equipment in many buildings
- Upgrades to thermostats and heating/cooling controls
- Weatherization projects in many buildings
- New roofs at the Community Health Building, Fire Med Station #3, and the Community Building
- New windows at City Hall
Energy saving policies:
We routinely update our building codes to comply with the latest International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), ensuring that new buildings and renovations are as energy efficient as possible.