In 2015, the Solsmart designee city of Burlington, Vermont, became one of the first cities in the United States powered by 100% renewable energy. The city’s 42,000 residents get their power from Burlington Electric using a combination of sources including biomass, wind, hydroelectric, and solar. Burlington’s main source of energy primarily comes from a hydropower dam due to the city’s proximity to the mouth of the Winooski River.
- Created an online permitting checklist, increasing transparency for community members and solar installers
- Reviewed local zoning codes and identified restrictions that intentionally or unintentionally prohibit solar PV development
- Removed access inspections for standard solar installations
- Integrated solar into relevant local plans
- Provided Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing