Our Approach

The New Energy Cities program, which concluded in 2016, was a partnership between Climate Solutions and innovative Northwest cities and counties that wish to be early adopters of the 21st Century clean energy system. We work with communities to help them achieve deep reduction in carbon emissions with strategies for energy efficient buildings, clean fuels transportation, and renewable energy. The program offered expertise in program design, finance, policy, and technical assistance to help communities develop practical, comprehensive strategies customized to their unique circumstances and assets.

Project goals were to help the cities and counties we work with to develop sustainable energy strategies that will create local jobs, spur economic development, reduce vulnerability to energy price swings, and leverage public and private investment in clean energy solutions.

Our Methodology

  1. Work with geographic clusters of small and medium-sized cities in Washington and Oregon that share the same geography; state and local governance; utilities; comprehensive planning process for land use and transportation; and employers.
  2. Align community energy efforts with statewide energy policies and Create energy sustainability strategies that complement city and county comprehensive plans.
  3. Require cluster cities to set ambitious but achievable carbon-reduction/energy savings goals by 2030 and 2050.
  4. Create energy maps that graphically display the sources and uses of energy, as well as carbon footprint.
  5. Use a carbon wedge analysis methodology to demonstrate the pathways to achieving reduction targets.
  6. Develop target scenarios and strategies for the built environment, transportation, and energy sectors based on emission reduction potential
  7. Lead the city in a process to choose the appropriate reduction scenarios with quantifiable targets that will work for that community’s particular built environment, transportation, and power supply characteristics.
  8. Work with the city staff to determine the proper order for each strategy, as well as the needed funding, policy, and partners.


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