International Focus Magazine Vol. 4, #1 - Page 49

Mayor Turner: That was in Decem- ber 2017. Our largest delegation to date, it was about 74 delegates. HeidiPP: What are your plans for 2019? Mayor Turner: In terms of 2019, we are starting to put together that itin- erary now. There could be a South Korean trip in there. They are work- ing to get a trip to Europe. I try to do only three a year. HeidiPP: You are a part of the Glob- al Covenant for Mayors for Climate and Energy and the head of the en- ergy capital of the world. What is your vision for Houston’s future in the Global Energy industry? Mayor Turner: I co-chair the United States Congress on Climate Change. You know we have 500-year weather records broken world wide. That is related to climate change. You know about the Paris Accord? Over 400 United States mayors signed on that, we will adhere to the Paris Accord when it comes to climate change, Houston being one of them. We are the energy capital of the world, but for us too, our focus is on renew- ables. The City of Houston purchases more green power than any other city in the U.S. We are about 82% wind power and 12% solar. That is 92% renewable energy for the City of Houston. HeidiPP: I did not know those de- tails, thank you. I am proud of our city’s diversity and vision. there are areas like Sunnyside. There are 300 acres of contaminated prop- erty. We are looking at how we can take and turn that around to make it useful soil. Then we can revitalize that whole community. So, let’s look and see how we take those 300 acres and turn them into a solar farm. All of this works hand in hand with the United States Conference of May- ors. I work very closely with Eric Garcetti, Mayor of Los Angeles, who is a leader in climate change. Mayor Turner: We are the energy capital of the world — but at the same time, we recognize the importance of green energy. We are doing that by leading and by being an example. Then the focus is on electric vehicles. HeidiPP: That is exciting to know The announcement is coming soon that even though the Federal Gov- about electric charge stations. Then ernment has decided not to pay at- tention, there are so many mayors working together on the issue. Mayor Turner: This is a period of time when the leadership does not necessarily come from the top down. It comes from the bottom up. Cities are playing a much greater role when it comes to climate change, when it comes to energy, consumption of energy, preserving our quality of life, transportation issues, etc. Cities are really stepping up. We work very closely with one another. One thing about mayors is we have to be results oriented. We have to learn to work with all different groups, personali- iF Magazine | 49