by Morgan Montalvo
San Antonians this week are getting a chance to offer their input on what the city's future energy model will look like, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Last evening CPS Energy and the city hosted a community forum at La Villita Assembly Hall. The utility's John Moreno says energy planners are anticipating demands for a fast-growing local population that is expected to increase by a million new residents before mid-century with projects such as a new solar farm on the grounds of Southwest Research Institute. .
"This is unique in that this is the first facility that CPS Energy actually actually own and operate," Moreno says of the SWRI solar complex. "In the past our solar contracts have have been just that - contracts where we purchase the power that's coming from those facilities."
Moreno says the solar farm should be operational sometime this year.
The city's Doug Melnick says citizen input is critical to formulating San Antonio's Climate Action and Adaptation Plan.
"This plan is a partnership between the city, CPS and UTSA. It lays a high-level framework to, one, how do we reduce our emissions which come from our buildings, come from energy generation and our vehicles, and then how do we prepare for those impacts," says Melnick.
The action plan, Melnick says, will combine public input with strategies to minimize the effects of compliance with the Paris Climate Accords, which call for a reduction in greenhouse gases and "carbon footprint" from fossil fuel consumption.
Alan Montemayor with the Sierra Club supports the climate action plan, but says everyone can do more to curb climate change.
"We need each and every person in San Antonio, and indeed in the world, to cut back on all of the resources that they are using, not just energy, which is critical of course, but water and gasoline," Montemayor says.
A second energy strategy and climate action plan community event is scheduled for tonight at the downtown public library.
PHOTO: CPS Energy and city representatives Monday evening co-hosted a public forum on San Antonio's Climate Action and Adaptation Plan to comply with the Paris Climate Accords while delivering energy for a fast-growing local population. Another community event is scheduled for tonight at the downtown public library. Photo by Morgan Montalvo