MIAMI, FLORIDA (June 1, 2021) – The Miami-area has received widespread attention over the past several months for its creative, ambitious courting of technology companies and its ongoing efforts to transform the “Magic City” and surrounding areas into a premier global innovation hub.
But, the transformation to a new “Silicon Beach” could be slowed or derailed because the carbon reduction commitments by the region’s largest utility are falling dramatically short of the cities that Miami is competing against for jobs, talent, investment, and employers. A lack of carbon reduction commitments and slower pace toward renewable energy could severely handicap Miami’s vision for its technology economy and all of its associated community benefits.
A new study commissioned by Chambers for Innovation and Clean Energy identifies weaknesses in the regional utility’s (Florida Power and Light) energy policies that could make Miami less attractive as a venue for businesses that are decarbonizing their operations. The report compares the Miami region to six other metropolitan areas in the Southeast United States.
“This study illustrates how companies of all sizes are increasingly factoring in climate considerations and carbon reduction measures into their business decisions, including the communities they seek to call home or expand in,” said Ryan Evans, Executive Director of Chambers of Innovation and Clean Energy. “Cities that are not aggressively pursuing a reduction of their carbon emissions are going to be at an economic disadvantage.”
The Miami Carbon Competitiveness Study analyzes three questions to assess how the sources of electric power in the Miami area may affect the city’s competitive position for attracting new businesses:
- Are Fortune 500 companies increasingly prioritizing climate and clean energy factors into their economic development decisions?
- How do the climate and renewable electricity plans of the Miami-area grid compare to the plans of power providers for six similarly sized cities with whom Miami competes for new businesses (competitor cities)?
- To what extent will the electricity generation plans for the Miami-area make it less attractive as companies consider expanding, relocating, or siting new facilities?
The study found that corporations are not only increasingly looking to procure renewable and lower zero-carbon electricity, but that they are also stepping up their efforts to focus investment and new facilities in areas that offer those electricity resources and have made community-wide commitments to achieving carbon neutrality.
The full report can be accessed here.