Arlington makes an A List for climate action leaders

Arlington County, Virginia, is one of only 122 global cities and counties to make the Carbon Disclosure Project’s A List, and one of just 36 in the United States to get a score of A for 2022.

The fifth-annual list of A-graded cities is based not only on renewable energy goals, but on actions taken and goals achieved to date.

The District and Baltimore also make the short list.

In Arlington County, one of its most ambitious goals in its Community Energy Plan which was updated by the County Board in 2019, was achieving 100% of electricity used by government buildings, including schools, from renewable sources.

The target for that goal was 2025 and the county achieved it two years early, through a public-private partnership.

“We partnered with Amazon and we partnered with Dominion Energy on a very, very large-scale solar farm. Our electricity now is being resourced by renewable energy, because of the size of that farm and because of its capacity to generate electricity and because of our share in it,” said Demetra McBride, Arlington County Office of Sustainability and Environmental Management Bureau chief.

Arlington County has set a goal to achieve 100% of the entire county’s electrical grid from renewable sources by 2035.

Another goal set by the county in its community energy plan is consideration of “energy equity” when implementing efforts.

“You don’t want a landscape where you have affluent areas and businesses that are able to attain energy performance buildings, alternative transportation, micromobility, and then leave underserved and overburdened communities to figure out how to do that on their own,” McBride said.

In order for the nonprofit Carbon Disclosure Project to consider a city or county for its A List, it must have a published climate action plan which includes long-term net-zero targets. Here’s the full list of 2022 A List cities.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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