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Portland commits to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050

Leaders from the City of Portland and Multnomah County have committed to 100 percent clean energy by the year 2050.

In an announcement earlier this week, authorities said that their goal was to meet the community's electricity needs with renewables by the year 2035 and to move all remaining energy sources to renewable ones by 2050.

"Getting our community to 100 percent renewable energy is a big goal,'' Ted Wheeler, City of Portland Mayor, said in a statement.

"And while it is absolutely ambitious, it is a goal that we share with Nike, Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, Google, GM, Coca Cola, Johnson & Johnson, and Walmart. We have a responsibility to lead this effort in Oregon.''

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Multnomah County is the most populous county in Oregon. Its Chair, Deborah Kafoury, welcomed the news. "This is a pledge to our children's future,'' she said. "100 percent renewables means a future with cleaner air, a stable climate and more jobs and economic opportunity.''

Portland is among a number of U.S. cities looking to embrace renewables. Over the weekend Chicago's Mayor, Rahm Emanuel, announced that city buildings there were to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy by 2025.

"By committing the energy used to power our public buildings to wind and solar energy, we are sending a clear signal that we remain committed to building a 21st century economy here in Chicago," Emanuel said.

Back in Portland, Wheeler noted that tackling climate change would need to be a collaborative effort. "We don't succeed addressing climate change by government action alone,'' he said.

"We need our whole community: government, businesses, organizations and households to work together to make a just transition to a 100 percent renewable future.''