More than 100 cities now mostly powered by renewable energy, data shows

The number of cities getting at least 70% of their total electricity supply from renewable energy has more than doubled since 2015

The Nesjavellir geothermal plant in Iceland. The capital Rejkjavik gets 100% of its electricity from renewable sources.
 The Nesjavellir geothermal plant in Iceland. The capital Rejkjavik gets 100% of its electricity from renewable sources. Photograph: Alamy

The number of cities reporting they are predominantly powered by clean energy has more than doubled since 2015, as momentum builds for cities around the world to switch from fossil fuels to renewable sources.

Data published on Tuesday by the not-for-profit environmental impact researcher CDP found that 101 of the more than 570 cities on its books sourced at least 70% of their electricity from renewable sources in 2017, compared to 42 in 2015.

Nicolette Bartlett, CDP’s director of climate change, attributed the increase to both more cities reporting to CDP as well as a global shift towards renewable energy.

The data was a “comprehensive picture of what cities are doing with regards to renewable energy,” she told Guardian Cities.

That large urban centres as disparate as Auckland, Nairobi, Oslo and Brasília were successfully moving away from fossil fuels was held up as evidence of a changing tide by Kyra Appleby, CDP’s director of cities.

“Reassuringly, our data shows much commitment and ambition,” she said in a statement. “Cities not only want to shift to renewably energy, but, most importantly – they can.”

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