Bellingham kicks off 'Energy Year' with downtown celebration

It's Energy Year in Bellingham.

Making that announcement at a festive celebration Wednesday afternoon was Mayor Kelli Linville, who also launched the Bellingham Energy Prize at the event.

The energy prize is a group effort of nine community partners, including Western Washington University; the prize brings energy saving resources together to make it easy to access expert help and take simple steps to save energy.

It all points to a big year in energy for the Bellingham community, according to a press release from the city:

  • We'll be working with community partners to go full-scale in promoting the Bellingham Energy Prize, our local effort to win the national 50-city Georgetown University Energy Prize competition.
  • We'll be supporting a Green Power Challenge to retain and strengthen Bellingham's role as a state and national leader in making the conversion to clean power sources.
  • We are supporting a Solarize Whatcom campaign to strengthen Bellingham's position as the Washington City with the most solar installations per capita -- and helping residents save energy.
  • Bellingham will release its revised Climate Action Plan in 2016 that will update energy and conservation measures and strengthen our resiliency for the future.

"As affirmed by the recent United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Paris, cities have a critical role in addressing the challenges of climate change, and Bellingham is committed to stepping up to the challenge," said Mayor Kelli Linville in the press release. "Conservation and support of renewable energy is win-win-win for the city, its residents, and the climate. City residents contribute to the fight against climate change, reduce local energy costs, improve their homes, and create a more resilient local energy system."

For more information, check out this story in The Bellingham Herald.

Western Today staff
Bellingham Mayor Kelli Linville announces 'Energy Year' at Bellingham City Hall Wednesday, Feb. 3. Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU
WWU President Bruce Shepard and Steve Hollenhorst, dean of Huxley College, high-five attendees Feb. 3. Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU
Steve Hollenhorst, dean of Huxley College, and Joel Swisher, director of Western's Institute for Energy Studies, attended Wednesday's kickoff event downtown. Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU
Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU
Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU
Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU
Photo by Rhys Logan / WWU