On January 1, 2010, the County Board announced that Arlington would expand its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by developing a Community Energy Plan (CEP), with the goal of offering strategies to:
- Enhance Arlington’s economic competitiveness
- Ensure reliable and affordable energy supplies
- Demonstrate the County’s long-term commitment to environmental responsibility
First Phase (January 2010 – May 2011)
The first phase of the Community Energy Plan project began in January 2010 with the creation of a Community Energy and Sustainability Task Force. This Task Force submitted its report on recommendations and strategies to the Board in May 2011. The Board accepted the Task Force report and adopted a number of policy determinations (PDF), including the establishment of the goal to reduce Arlington’s greenhouse gas emissions by approximately 75% by the year 2050 compared to a 2007 baseline.
Second Phase and Adoption (May 2011 – June 2013)
Following the May 2011 County Board meeting, the County Manager appointed a group of local energy and business leaders (PDF) to an Advisory Group, with quarterly meeting open to the public. With guidance from the Advisory Group and the public through a series of Energy Forums and a rigorous public engagement process (PDF), County Staff created the final version of the Community Energy Plan (PDF) and an accompanying Implementation Framework (PDF).
On June 15, 2013, Arlington’s County Board adopted the Community Energy Plan and approved the accompanying Implementation Framework as an administrative guide for staff implementation of the Community Energy Plan.
The Board also directed the County Manager to establish a Community Energy Plan Implementation Review Committee (CEPIRC) to report to the Manager.
Implementation (June 2013 – Present)
Arlington is working with the community to achieve the Community Energy Plan’s goals. The CEP will bring many benefits to both residents and businesses in Arlington:
- Increased energy efficiency will save money – lowering utility and other energy costs reduces the cost of living and doing business in Arlington.
- Increased energy resiliency – our energy sources will be more reliable and our energy pricing will be more competitive. By generating energy locally with renewables and district energy, we will place less demand on the local grid, help minimize supply disruptions, and increase fuel choices, resulting in more stable energy prices.
- Improved local and regional environmental quality – reducing the County’s carbon footprint will make Arlington a healthier, more pleasant place to live and work.