These Kootenay communities have made a clean energy commitment

Phasing out fossil fuels and switching to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050 is the goal of 100% Renewable Kootenays campaign

Overview of Trail, showing two bikers in foreground of photo.

The City of Trail is the newest community to embrace a Kootenay-wide renewable energy campaign. Improving bike trails is one way municipalities can encourage a transition towards clean energy. — Larry Doell photo

Earlier this year, the City of Trail officially became the thirteenth community in the Kootenays to commit to 100 per cent renewable energy no later than 2050.

“This is a very important step for Trail, and all communities,” said Trail mayor Lisa Pasin. “As we experience the effects from extreme changes in our climate, learn more about the environmental and health benefits of renewable energy, and continue to build a strong and sustainable economy, we must evolve and commit to this transition.”

100% Renewable Kootenays is a campaign of Nelson-based Neighbours United (formerly the West Kootenay EcoSociety). The goal is for the Kootenays to phase out fossil fuels and be on 100 per cent renewable energy in all sectors no later than 2050. This transition to clean energy includes electricity, heating and cooling in buildings, transportation and industry.

Produced by Neighbours United, the West Kootenay 100% Renewable Energy Plan identifies the actions that local governments can take and measures how much impact the actions will have on carbon pollution and energy use in our communities. Some of those actions include:

  • Retrofitting existing buildings to reduce their energy use
  • Making our economy more circular by reducing, refusing, re-using and recycling
  • Generating more renewable energy in our region
  • Accelerating the switch to electric vehicles

It’s through grassroots efforts and local actions that “big moves” can happen in small communities.

Here’s a list of the thirteen Kootenay governments that have made the commitment to 100% renewable energy by 2050, followed by year adopted:

  1. Village of Slocan, 2017
  2. City of Nelson, 2018
  3. Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK), 2018
  4. City of Rossland, 2019
  5. Village of New Denver, 2019
  6. Village of Silverton, 2019
  7. City of Castlegar, 2019
  8. Village of Warfield, 2019
  9. Village of Kaslo, 2019
  10. Village of Fruitvale, 2021
  11. Town of Creston, 2021
  12. Town of Golden, 2022
  13. City of Trail, 2022
Julie Matchett

Julie Matchett is a writer and content coordinator for KPI Media. She ranks as a 7 on the Introversion vs. Extraversion scale out of 100, which might help to explain why she chose a career of quiet contemplation as opposed to public speaking. View all of Julie Matchett’s articles

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