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City of Columbus
City of Columbus

The Need

In 2017, Mayor Ginther recommitted the City of Columbus to the Global Covenant of Mayors and announced an ambitious goal to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions from municipal operations by 40% by the year 2030 and to explore a 100% renewable energy portfolio for municipal operations. In 2020, Mayor Ginther updated these goals when he announced plans for the City’s residents and small businesses to go 100% renewable by 2022 through Community Choice Aggregation and a goal for the entire Columbus community to be a carbon neutral City by 2050.

In early 2019, Go Sustainable Energy began serving as the lead Renewable Energy Owner’s Representative for the City.

Our Approach

Our first task was to research and analyze how the City might own renewable energy systems in a comprehensive fashion considering:

  • Sites – Identify available sites, scrutinize their potential, prioritize for potential deployment, and quantify the potential.

  • Stakeholders – Engage and interview stakeholders from diverse departments to absorb knowledge and enhance our findings.

  • Technologies – Research and analyze renewable energy technologies to understand those that optimize goal achievement.

  • Contracts – Review and understand the implications of energy-related contracts held by the City and its departments.

  • Rules & Regulations – Understand and identify the pertinent local, state, and federal boundaries and opportunities.

  • Economics – Prove the value proposition of our recommendations.

  • Ownership – Recommend deployment paths appropriate for the City.

This effort was generously supported by a broad group of City stakeholders from multiple departments and by our subcontractors.

The Results

The City has a thoroughly documented plan to significantly reduce emissions using renewable energy over the coming decade. This plan consists of prioritized City-owned sites, appropriately vetted ownership models, clear action steps, and off-site priorities. Critically, the City and its Divisions can make significant climate progress while enacting this plan in an economical fashion, serving as an example for Cities everywhere.

In 2020 and beyond, our team is helping the City enact this plan.

Our Role

Renewable Energy Owner’s Representative, Technical Advisor

The Client

The City of Columbus


2019 - present


Gregory Raffio, PE, LEED AP BD+C

John Seryak, PE

Milena Walwer

Peter Kleinhenz, PE

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