Natural Resources and Clean Energy
The environmental focus of Florida’s League of Women Voters is having a healthy natural environment and combating the effects of climate change. Here in North Florida the importance of natural resources concerns mainly the health of our springs and the Floridan Aquifer, the Apalachee River Basin and oyster industry, and opposition to fracking and other oil exploration in the Big Bend area. The clean energy focus is aimed at promoting the adoption of electric vehicles and building EV infrastructure, the expansion of rooftop solar, and building energy efficient schools and other buildings.
Here at the local level, we focus chiefly on developing a relationship with our local legislative representatives and keeping them abreast of the League’s position on environmentally related bills that come before the state Legislature, plus working to incorporate state initiatives at the local level. For example, several years ago we started a solar cooperative in Tallahassee for the purpose of obtaining a bulk discount by going solar in a group. We are also proud of our participation in the city’s development of its 62-megawatt solar farms. Our committee is also active in Tally 100, the local group monitoring the city’s development and implementation of their Clean Energy Plan.
Recently, we were successful in promoting Leon County’s and the City of Tallahassee’s adoption of a ban on certain single-use plastics in county and city activities. Our most recent achievement is getting the city to adopt a Green Building Policy for city buildings. We also testified regarding Blueprint’s Office of Economic Vitality Targeted Business Program and hope to have the office incorporate clean energy incentives into their applicant scoring process.
Upcoming projects under consideration include organizing another solar coop; addressing the wide use of single-use plastics in our public school system; promoting a green building policy into the building and renovation of Leon County Schools; and incorporating sustainability principles into the update of Leon County’s Comprehensive Plan.
Finally, the Tallahassee League has adopted a portion of north Duval Street between Brevard and Tennessee (check out our sign on Duval beside the Greyhound bus station), for which we pull together a group of about 8 members and pick up the liter about 3 to 4 times per year.
Natural Resources and Clean Engery
National Shoreline Cleanup Day
Recently, about a dozen members of the Natural Resources and Clean Energy Group met at Lake Henrietta to participate in the National Shoreline Cleanup Day. They got a good haul of trash (much of it recyclable) and enjoyed being outdoors and visiting with each other while doing something good for the environment. See photos here.