Columbia’s pretty rad. We’ve got things going on and, better yet, things to do and take part in. Since my last two CBT articles...
The City of Columbia was announced as one of 50 communities that will advance in the Semifinal round of the Georgetown University Energy Prize. The prize, a national competition that encourages small and mid-sized communities to implement creative energy solutions, awards $5 million to advance energy efficiency projects. The competition requires each community to measure residential and municipal energy use for two years. At the end of the two years, the community that managed to reduce the most energy in the most innovative way is awarded the prize.
Missouri is currently ranked 44th in the nation for energy efficiency, but City sustainability educator Brenna Reed hopes Columbia’s involvement in the Energy Prize can help improve that ranking. “We know by helping residents to reduce their monthly utility expenses, we can do this, and create a healthier environment to live in,” said Reed in a press release provided by the city. Columbia’s campaign for the competition, The CoMo Energy Challenge, aims to educate residents on making their homes more energy efficient, as well as boosting existing programs such as rebates and financing offers for home efficiency upgrades.
“Not only do these communities come from across the map, they come from across the political spectrum, represent all socioeconomic strata and include demographically diverse populations,” said Francis Slakey, founder and executive director of the Georgetown University Energy Prize, adding, “Some are paying the highest prices for energy, some have the ambition to be carbon net-zero, but all communities share the goal of transforming America’s energy future.”