This badass GOP mayor switched his Texas city to renewable energy because of ‘the facts.’

Georgetown, a Texas a city about 30 miles out of Austin, with a population of around 67,000, is a red city with a mayor who proudly attended Donald Trump's inauguration. In a state dominated by big oil, it’s the last place you’d expect to find a city that’s ran on 100% renewable energy … but it is.

The only other city to run on 100% renewables is in liberal Vermont.

When asked why a red city in a red state is one of the first cities in the U.S. to be powered 100% by renewable energy, his answer is simple: “In Georgetown, we make our decisions based on the facts.”


In an interview with the CBC, he had harsh words for president Trump, who’s been a huge supporter of coal.

“I couldn't disagree with him more on environmental or energy policy,” he said. “He says it's clean coal. There is no such animal as clean coal. If he would invite me to the White House, I could show him the art of the deal when it comes to energy.”

Halifax International Security Forum/Flickr

When Georgetown’s power contract was up in 2012, the city looked at its options and renewable energy was complete no-brainer over oil and gas which prices fluctuate by the day.

“Wind and solar would give us fixed-rate pricing for 25 years. With natural gas, it's only seven years,” Ross said. “So we know, all the way through 2041, what we are going to pay for our electricity, which gives us cost certainty, which minimizes and mitigates volatility in the short-term market.”

“In Texas, it's $2.50 per gallon of gasoline,” he continued. “If I made you an offer that for 25 years I can guarantee you $2.50, would you take it? I would lock in, for sure.”

Georgetown gets its solar power from the 154 megawatt Buckthorn solar plant in West Texas and draws wind power from a farm near Amarillo and two in west Texas.

Ross and his city’s decision to put policy and science before party is refreshing in an era marked by political divisions. “In Georgetown,” he said, “we put silly national partisan politics to the side and we just do what's good for the voters and citizens that put us into office.”

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.