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Cities Leading Through Energy Analysis and Planning Helps Support Local Clean Energy Innovation

March 26, 2015 by Steve Lommele

Local governments nationwide are pursuing strategies to improve the sustainability, resiliency, and energy futures of their communities. A host of federal and non-profit tools and programs exist to support these strategies, but until now no single program has focused specifically on helping cities address all of their energy, sustainability, and resiliency challenges. The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Cities Leading through Energy Analysis and Planning (Cities-LEAP) project aims to change that by supporting the widespread implementation of data-driven energy policies, programs, and projects by cities.

As a first step in defining the Cities-LEAP project, the project team created two new visual resources to catalog the programs and tools currently supporting local governments across a range of sectors and scales. We are actively seeking feedback on both of these elements, and plan to refine and finalize them in the coming weeks.

Visualization of C-LEAP programs.
Visualization of C-LEAP tools

The first graphic illustrates the energy sector(s) each program addresses, the programmatic goal of the provider, the scale of local impact, and nationwide magnitude of programmatic impact. The Cities-LEAP project is the only program that covers all goals across each sector in the city-level space.

The second graphic identifies the tools available to help cities with energy planning efforts by sector and planning phase. Cities-LEAP will add to the suite of tools currently available to cities by delivering an accessible and easy-to-use Web-based platform that provides comprehensive, standardized, and usable estimates of local energy use for every city in the United States.

The new Cities-LEAP tool and related project resources will guide decision making in early phase city planning and implementation, including:

  • Setting climate or energy goals
  • Prioritizing and implementing energy strategies
  • Seeing the impacts of potential climate or energy action plans
  • Learning from peers about city energy planning best practices
  • Getting access to credible data and transparent, usable analytic methodologies
  • Making data-driven energy decisions.

Cities-LEAP will continue to update these visual resources based on stakeholder feedback and we would like to hear from you about other programs or tools that should be represented on these graphics. Do you find these resources helpful? Is there anything else you think we’re missing? Please email us with your feedback.

Tags: Tools Resources