Tampa, FL — On Friday, the City of Tampa released their Climate Action & Equity Plan, under development since 2020. The plan includes steps to phase out fossil fuels and transition the city to 100% clean and renewable energy, in response to years of community organizing culminating in the Tampa City Council’s 2021 clean energy resolution.
A prompt transition to 100% clean, renewable energy in municipal operations, weatherization, energy efficiency, and solar building codes are at the heart of the plan. The plan also encourages policymaking and incentives to transition fossil fuels out of the public sector, referencing policies in other major cities to get around investor-owned utilities’ reliance on fossil fuels through mandates, monitoring and incentives; and outlines how a renewable energy transition will impact electric bills, by reducing and ultimately eliminating recent fossil fueled rate hikes. Since January 2019, the average Tampa Electric bill has increased 62%.
Food & Water Watch Senior Florida Organizer Brooke Ward, who was instrumental in passing Tampa’s 2021 clean energy resolution, issued the following statement:
“After years of organizing, we are happy to see a comprehensive City of Tampa plan to phase out fossil fuels in our community. But city action in a silo will be ineffective. The Hillsborough County Commission must follow suit and pass a countywide climate action and equity plan to address our community’s unsustainable fossil fuel reliance. Our rising energy bills and rising seas are intertwined, and as we speed towards a climate tipping point, it is imperative that our local electeds do all they can to curtail the use of fossil fuels and end skyrocketing energy bills.”