Transportation is among Tampa’s and St. Petersburg’s clean energy challenges: Insights from the 2024 scorecard

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The 2024 City Clean Energy Scorecard evaluates 75 major U.S. cities on clean energy efforts, including transportation initiatives. Tampa and St. Petersburg face challenges due to outdated zoning codes and insufficient data collection. WMNF’s Kerilyn Kwiatkowski reports the importance of addressing these gaps.

Recent evaluations have shown that Tampa and St. Petersburg scored below 10 out of 70 points in transportation. Stefen Samarripas, the Senior Local Policy Manager at the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, stresses the importance of tackling emissions.

“Thinking about transportation emissions is going to be important because this is going to be jumping off the page if you’re looking at your emissions state. Everything from thinking about investing more in electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, providing incentives for folks to get access to those vehicles, especially low-income communities.” – Stefen Samarripas

In 2023, St. Petersburg updated its zoning regulations and mandated Level 2 EV charging stations in new developments, but lags in data collection. Tampa’s zoning codes remain unchanged lacking mandates for EV charging stations.

“Updating your zoning code so you’re thinking about how development is being laid out in the city. If you’re growing a lot, think very carefully about ways in which you can incentivize folks to live near where they work.” – Stefen Samarripas

The Clean Energy Scorecard underscores the changes these cities must make as they transition to clean energy.

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