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WWF is challenging cities to do more than turn out their lights for Earth Hour.

The Earth Hour City Challenge is a year-long competition among cities to promote renewable energy and prepare for climate change. U.S. cities that participate are recognized for their efforts in spreading the global movement to create more sustainable, resilient cities and compete for the title of U.S. Earth Hour Capital as well as grants from WWF.

Forward-thinking cities are transitioning toward 100 percent renewable energy and addressing local climate threats by implementing practical measures that improve air quality, protect water supplies and reduce urban flooding. With your help, your community can take action too.

Are You a City Official Interested in the Earth Hour City Challenge

The Earth Hour City Challenge recognizes cities for adopting renewable energy and preparing for climate-related severe weather. Joining is easy and participating cities will have a chance to be crowned the Earth Hour Capital.

Learn more about how your city can be involved

Who is Participating?


Success Stories

  • evanston skyline

    Evanston: 2015 US Earth Hour Capital

    Evanston has already reached its first emission reduction commitment and formulated new goals together with an updated action plan in 2013. As a small city, Evanston generates most of its emissions from buildings and has implemented several initiatives to reduce energy consumption. All new buildings are required to achieve a LEED Silver status as a minimum. Several existing buildings also retrofitted, including 50 low-income households that received special support through a weatherization program. Evanston has secured a supply of 100 percent renewable energy for residents and small businesses through the City's electricity aggregation program. Evanston has also installed solar panels at its water treatment facility.

  • seattle skyline

    Seattle: 2015 US Earth Hour Capital Finalist

    Seattle has set an ambitious commitment to eliminate carbon emissions by 2050. To achieve this goal, it has developed a comprehensive climate action plan that emphasizes actions within transport, buildings and waste. By 2020, it aims to reduce emissions from city fleet operations byover 40 percent, leading to 1 million gallons of reduced fuel consumption. Seattle is already sourcing 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, but is still working to improve energy efficiency through several public-private partnerships. One of these is the Seattle 2030 initiative which aims to redevelop a district to become carbon neutral, and to showcase the positive business case for sustainable buildings.

  • cleveland EHCC

    Cleveland: 2015 US Earth Hour Capital Finalist

    Cleveland returns as a finalist again in this year’s City Challenge. The city aims to reduce GHG emissions with 80 percent by 2050. The city has developed a comprehensive action plan which focuses on developing green buildings, renewable energy, sustainable mobility and waste management. Cleveland is planning to more than double its bikeway miles by the end of 2017. It is also planning nine wind turbines at Lake Eerie, which will be the first freshwater wind turbines in North America. Cleveland has increased its sourcing of renewable energy through a comprehensive aggregation program, providing 100 percent renewable electricity to over 65,000 residents through renewable energy credits (RECs). To improve energy efficiency the city offers a retrofitting program for middle-income households.