Billings, MT - The City of Billings ranks 63rd in a survey of 68 major US cities for solar energy in a new report.
“Cities like Billings could lead the way to a future powered by clean, renewable energy,” said Skye Borden with Environment Montana. “If we tapped into our vast solar energy potential, Billings would benefit from cleaner air and fight climate change.”
Billings ranked ahead of Cheyenne, WY, and just behind Omaha, NE, for megawatts of solar energy (per capita) as of year-end 2017. The city plans to install solar panels at Skyview High this summer, a project that local school officials estimate will save $327,000 in energy costs over thirty years.
The report, Shining Cities 2018: How Smart Local Policies Are Expanding Solar Power in America, shows that the top 20 solar cities, comprising just 0.1 percent of the country’s land mass, account for 4 percent of U.S. solar capacity.
“We are in a moment when progress on renewable energy will come from cities across the country,” said Borden with Environment Montana. “More local leaders should step up and start plugging their communities into the clean and virtually limitless power of the sun.”
Shining Cities is the fifth annual report from Environment Montana Research & Policy Center. Each year, the survey ranks nearly 70 of the nation’s major cities by megawatts of solar energy.