Written by Rob Pressly, NACo Program Manager.
Just last week, Georgetown University announced a new
competition for communities to develop energy programs that will reduce their
energy consumption. The Georgetown University
Energy Prize competition is offering a $5 million prize to a local
community that can come up with the best long-term energy efficiency plan for
“innovative, replicable, scalable and continual reductions in the per capita
energy consumed from local natural gas and electric utilities.” Ultimately, the
award aims to create new ways for counties and local communities to think
about how and why they use energy, with a focus on the role of energy reduction
in tackling the energy and environmental challenges they face.
Who can compete?
The competition is open to any county, city or town with a
population between 5,000 and 250,000. All told, there are some 8,892 eligible
communities, which represent nearly two-thirds of all the communities in the
nation. Is your county eligible to compete? Click here to find out.
How will plans be judged?
Participating counties will be required to create a
long-term plan for energy reduction, as well as demonstrate their plan’s preliminary
effectiveness for two years. Plans will be judged on a number of factors,
including how well they:
- Create innovative approaches and techniques for reducing
per-capita energy use,
- Develop best practices to unite citizens, local governments,
businesses, and electric utilities,
- Educate the public, especially students, on energy
efficiency issues and the benefits of reducing energy use, and
- Increase the visibility of the work that Georgetown
University and the prize’s sponsors are doing to develop new strategies for
reducing energy usage and increasing energy efficiency.
When can you start?
are accepted until June 30, 2014, so get started today! To review the full
timeline of the competition, click