SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — The City of Savannah is taking the next step in its clean energy pledge, expanding solar power to more than a dozen city facilities.
City council approved the purchase of solar energy for 19 city facilities, including community centers, fire stations and police headquarters.
District 4 Alderman Nick Palumbo has been leading the charge on sustainability initiatives and said the solar expansion will ultimately save the city $30,000 each year.
“These are dollars that we can apply to any multitude of services — park maintenance, park and tree maintenance, police and fire salaries which are all increasing in the 2023 budget,” Palumbo said. “This is going to pay dividends for years to come and help us build a stronger, more resilient city.”
Once completed, Savannah will become the largest municipal supplier of solar energy in the state of Georgia. The agreement with a private contractor will also allow the city to offer workforce training seminars for unemployed Savannahians.
“We’re in a unique position on Georgia’s coast to be able to lead the charge and we’re excited to be a pioneer here in leading the state in solar energy,” Palumbo said.
The expansion follows from Mayor Van Johnson to expand solar energy in Savannah made with Sen. Jon Ossoff and U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm. Palumbo said it’s a step in eventually transitioning to 100% clean energy in all city buildings.
“You only get one planet and you only have one city of Savannah,” he said. “So, take advantage of the new technologies that are here to help us save money at the same time.”
The alderman said he expects it to be a quick rollout, with those buildings getting solar energy installed in the coming weeks and months.