City of Atlanta Relaunches the Clean Energy Advisory Board

Staff Report

Monday, February 6th, 2023

Mayor Andre Dickens and Chief Sustainability Officer Chandra Farley have relaunched the Clean Energy Advisory Board. The Clean Energy Advisory Board will help build public support for the Clean Energy Atlanta Plan from a diverse group of stakeholders and leverage local expertise on clean energy issues.

The Clean Energy Advisory Board was originally launched in 2020 following a recommendation in the Clean Energy Plan. In March of 2019, the Atlanta City Council unanimously passed Resolution No. 17-R3510, adopting Clean Energy Atlanta. The Plan charts a path to achieve 100 percent clean energy by 2035. With a focus on energy equity, Clean Energy Atlanta stated that “100 percent of Atlantans should have access to 100 percent clean energy.”

“The nation’s climate crisis has created an urgent need for equitable solutions that accelerate a transition to clean energy,” said Mayor Dickens. “Like many of our efforts in Atlanta, reaching these clean energy milestones is a group project, which is why the community-led Clean Energy Advisory Board will play a pivotal role in reducing carbon emissions and building more sustainable and climate resilient communities.”

The Clean Energy Advisory Board will include 25 civic leaders from the public, nonprofit and private sectors—each of whom can serve two-year terms. Six seats on the board are allocated for community leaders from the city’s six most energy burdened NPU’s. Residents in these southwest Atlanta neighborhoods experience energy burdens that are three to four times higher than national averages, based on data provided by Greenlink.

The Board will provide recommendations that will help the City of Atlanta reach 100 percent clean energy by 2035 and ensure that clean energy plans and policies are centered in equity, advance environmental justice and support data transparency. Working groups will be established to address climate impacts, affordable housing, energy affordability, sustainable transportation and youth climate action—all through a community-driven approach.

“The members of the Clean Energy Advisory Board understand that we must prioritize the voice of our most marginalized residents, those that have been largely left out of the benefits of the clean energy transition,” said Chief Sustainability Officer Farley. “The time is now to activate our City’s rich ecosystem of expertise to attract resources and implement solutions that mitigate the worst impacts of climate change while also creating a local clean energy economy that benefits all Atlantans.”

The Board will meet quarterly with working groups collaborating monthly. The relaunch of the Board initiates a one-year process to update metrics and measure progress towards the Clean Energy Atlanta Plan goals. The Board’s recommendations will also inform development of a comprehensive Sustainability and Climate Resilience Plan that the Office of Sustainability and Resilience will launch in 2024.

The Clean Energy Advisory Board members include:

Chandra Farley, Co-Chair and Chief Sustainability Officer, City of Atlanta, Mayor’s Office of Sustainability and Resilience
Angela Clyde, Chair, City of Atlanta, Neighborhood Planning Unit T
Anne E. Phillips*, APAB President, Neighborhood Planning Unit Chair, NPU-Z
Avery Evans, Graduate Student, M.I.S., Urban Studies, Georgia State University
Blair Beasley, Director of Climate Strategies, Ray C. Anderson Foundation
Bonita Johnson, Senior Physical Scientist, Water Division Environmental Justice Coordinator, White House Environmental Justice Interagency Council-Regional Committee Co-Chair, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Ciannat Howett*, Assistance Vice President, Sustainability, Resilience and Economic Inclusion, Emory University and Emory Healthcare
Codi Norred, Executive Director, Georgia Interfaith Power and Light
Dr. Erica Holloman-Hill*, Director, Environmental Justice Programs, West Atlanta Watershed Alliance
James Marlow, President, Southface
Jennette Gayer*, Director, Environment Georgia
Khalifa Lee*, Executive Board Vice Chair, City of Atlanta, Neighborhood Planning Unit-H
Dr. LaToria Whitehead*, President & Founder LS Whitehead Group, LLC and Spelman College
Lamia Lopez, Environmental Science Student, Spelman College
Lauren Westmoreland*, Vice President, Energy and Sustainability, Stewards of Affordable Housing for the Future
Maggie Kelley Riggins, Senior Program Manager, Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance
Dr. Matt Cox*, CEO, Greenlink Analytics
Odetta MacLeish-White*, Director, Georgia Initiatives, Center for Community Progress
Rex Hamre, National Director, Sustainability, JLL Project and Development Services
Robbie Hunter*, President, Graymont Drive Neighborhood Association, NPU-S
Sheryl Brown*, Owner, Thrive Public Relations Atlanta and Director, ACE Warriors, NPU-R
Susan Evans, Program Manager, Atlanta Housing Authority
Solomon McBride, Manager, Just Energy, Partnership for Southern Equity

*Indicates Board Member’s term extended one year, and ends December 31, 2023, due to the City of Atlanta Office of Sustainability and Resilience leadership transition.