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Las Vegas city buildings 100% renewable energy powered

Posted at 5:30 PM, Feb 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-10 09:40:14-05

During the summer time, Sin City can easily seem hotter than Hell.

Keeping buildings air conditioned there plus the flashing lights the city of Las Vegas is known for takes a lot of energy.

But the city in the middle of the desert has actually become a green leader.

Las Vegas announced recently the city's buildings, facilities and street lights are now completely powered by renewable energy, most of which is solar.

It was a commitment the city made back in 2005, to reach the milestone by 2025.

Tom Perrigo is the city of Las Vegas' director of planning and chief sustainability officer.

"This region in southern Nevada is one of the best places in the world for solar power," Perrigo said. "The commitment was to reduce our greenhouse gas to seven percent below 1990 levels. With this latest advancement we are now at a level of greenhouse gas emissions equal to what we were in 1950 when we were a city of 24,000 people."

Outside Las Vegas City Hall, and in front of the iconic "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign are several solar arrays Perrigo says are meant to make a statement about Las Vegas' commitment to renewable energy.

Perrigo says the resorts on the Las Vegas Strip, which technically isn't part of the city, have also lead the way in reducing energy consumption and harnessing renewable energy.

Mandalay Bay's is home to one of the largest rooftop solar arrays in the country.

Perrigo says the next step is to expand renewable energy power to homes and commercial businesses in the city.

The city of Las Vegas gets the bulk of its power from a massive solar plant outside of the city owned by the local utility.