We are excited to announce an extension of our platform today: Environment for All: Climate Resiliency and Affordable Energy Plan for Knoxville’s Neighborhoods. As a long-time climate activist, I believe cities are in a unique position to mitigate the causes and adapt to the changes of the climate crisis on a local level. Our Climate Resiliency and Affordable Energy Plan is a long-term strategic plan for the City of Knoxville with the causes, impacts, and effects of climate change at the forefront.
Here is our proposed plan in full:
Climate Resiliency and Affordable Energy Plan for Knoxville’s Neighborhoods
With hotter summers and more extreme storms, the impacts of the climate crisis are already being felt in Knoxville and around the country. Many in our communities already struggle to pay their utility bills and as Knoxville continues to grow, we need a long-term, strong, and comprehensive plan to ensure that growth is sustainable and accessible to all of Knoxville’s neighborhoods. While Knoxville has made some important steps, we need to dramatically expand our efforts to protect our communities and do our part to address the climate crisis on a city level. Our Climate Resiliency and Affordable Energy Plan is a long-term strategic plan for the City of Knoxville with the causes, impacts, and effects of climate change at the forefront. Addressing the climate crisis is an opportunity to instill real democracy, good jobs with living wages, healthy, safe, and well-resourced communities, and affordable housing for all Knoxville neighborhoods.
Energy efficiency and weatherization
- Building on the success of the Knoxville Extreme Energy Makeover (KEEM) program, expand the low-income home weatherization program to serve the thousands of households on the waiting list
- Create bill financing programs to expand access to energy efficiency upgrades to more Knoxvillians
- Following Memphis’s example, adopt an energy efficient building ordinance for rental properties to ensure affordable power bills for Knoxville’s tenants
- Join with cities like Athens, GA in committing to getting 100% of Knoxville’s power from renewable sources by 2035
- Support a community-scale solar installation in Knoxville with battery storage and microgrid to create local clean energy jobs and protect Knoxville from large-scale blackouts
- Build on the recent purchase of electric buses for the KUB Sutherland route by expanding the city bus system and converting all city buses to electric. Expanded electric bus service will reduce air pollution, commute times, carbon emissions, and fuel costs
- Promote strong local economies in ALL of Knoxville’s neighborhoods to reduce commute times and vehicle emissions
- Expand public participation in KUB governance and Board appointments
- Create a multi-year climate plan with KUB and community organizations to set and meet benchmarks for reducing overall energy usage through weatherization and adoption of renewable energy sources
- Leverage Knoxville’s position as one of the largest customers of TVA to advocate for a just transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy in the TVA system