State and Local Policy Database

Augusta

City Scorecard Rank

100

Augusta, GA

4.50Scored out of 100Updated 10/2020
Local Government Score:
0 out of 10 points
Local Government Climate and Energy Goals List All

Climate Mitigation Goal

Augusta does not have a climate mitigation or greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal for municipal operations.

Energy Reduction Goal

We were unable to find information regarding a municipal energy reduction goal.

Renewable Energy Goal

We were unable to find information regarding a municipal renewable energy goal.

Last updated: June 2021

Procurement and Construction List All

Fleet policies and composition

We were unable to find information on Augusta’s fleet procurement policies or fuel efficiency requirements. We were unable to find data regarding fleet composition.

Public lighting 

We were unable to find information regarding the adoption of a policy requiring efficient outdoor lighting, such as the International Dark-Sky Association’s Model Lighting Ordinance. We were unable to confirm if Augusta has an outdoor lighting upgrade program.

Onsite renewable systems

We were unable to find information regarding onsite renewable energy systems in Augusta.  

Inclusive procurement 

We were unable to verify if the city has inclusive procurement and contracting processes.

Last updated: June 2021

Asset Management List All

Building Benchmarking

We were unable to find information regarding Augusta's benchmarking practices.

Comprehensive Retrofit Strategy

We were unable to find information regarding a comprehensive retrofit strategy in Augusta.

Last updated: June 2021

Community-Wide Initiatives
Score: 0 out of 15 points
Community-Wide Summary List All

We could not verify if Augusta has adopted a climate, clean energy, or sustainability plan.

Last updated: July 2021

Community-Wide Climate Mitigation and Energy GoalsList All

Climate Mitigation Goal

The city does not have a climate mitigation or greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal.

Energy Reduction Goal

We did not find information regarding a community-wide energy reduction goal for the city.

Renewable Energy Goal

We did not find information regarding a community-wide renewable energy goal for the city.

Energy Data Reporting

The city does not report community-wide energy data.

Last updated: July 2021

Equity-Driven Approaches to Clean Energy Planning, Implementation, and EvaluationList All

Equity-Driven Community Engagement

We were unable to determine whether relevant decision-makers have taken a unique and expanded approach in conducting engagement for multiple clean energy initiatives with marginalized groups compared to engagement with other city constituencies.

Equity-Driven Decision-Making

We were unable to determine if the city has created a formal role for marginalized community residents or local organizations representing those communities to participate in decision-making that affects the creation or implementation of a local energy, sustainability, or climate action plan.

Accountability to Equity

We were unable to determine whether the city has adopted specific goals, metrics, or protocols to track how multiple energy, sustainability, or climate action initiatives are affecting local marginalized groups. 

Last updated: July 2021

Clean Distributed Energy SystemsList All

We could not verify if the city has adopted a formal policy, rule, or agreement that supports the creation of clean distributed energy systems.

Last updated: July 2021

Mitigation of Urban Heat Islands List All

UHI Mitigation Goal

We could not verify if the city has adopted a quantifiable urban heat island mitigation goal.

UHI Policies and Programs

We were unable to determine if the city has adopted specific policies or programs that incorporate requirements or incentives to mitigate the urban heat island effect. 

Last updated: July 2021

Buildings Policies
Score: 1 out of 30 points
Buildings Summary List All

The City of Augusta uses and enforces the state energy code. We could not find information on city mandated benchmarking policies, incentives, or above-code energy action requirements.

Last updated: July 2021

Building Energy Code AdoptionList All

Overview

The State of Georgia is a home rule state in which jurisdictions may set their own building energy codes. They have adopted the 2015 IECC with Georgia Amendments for both residential and commercial buildings. To learn more about the Georgia building codes, please visit the State Policy Database.

Commercial

Commercial buildings must comply with the 2015 IECC with state amendments. The code uses a commercial zEPI score of 59.7.

Residential

Residential buildings must comply with the 2015 IECC with state amendments. The code uses a residential zEPI score of 59.6.

Solar-readiness policies

The city has not adopted a policy mandating new construction be solar-ready.

EV-charging readiness and infrastructure policies

The city has not adopted a policy mandating new construction be EV-ready.

Last updated: July 2021

Building Energy Code Enforcement and ComplianceList All

Augusta requires plan reviews and site inspections. We could not find information on the number of full-time employees the city staffs to enforce the energy code. We could not find information regarding upfront support for code compliance.

Last updated: July 2021

Policies Targeting Existing BuildingsList All

We could not find information on whether the city incentivizes or requires energy-saving actions in existing buildings.

Last updated: July 2021

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Workforce DevelopmentList All

We could not verify if the city has programs committed to developing a dedicated energy efficiency and/or renewable energy workforce.

Last updated: July 2021

Energy & Water Utilities
Score: 2 out of 15 points
Energy & Water Utilities Summary List All

 

Georgia Power, an investor-owned utility (IOU), is the primary electric utility for the City of Augusta. The primary natural gas supplier for Augusta is Atlanta Gas Light, which is a subsidiary of Southern Company Gas, an IOU. The State of Georgia requires electric utilities to file Integrated Resource Plans (IRP) to the Georgia Public Service Commission every three years. These plans may include Demand Side Management programs. Natural gas utilities are not required to file IRPs. To learn more about the state requirements for electric and gas efficiency, please visit the Georgia page of the State Database

The Augusta Utilities Department is the municipal utility that provides the City of Augusta with drinking water services, wastewater treatment, and stormwater management. 

Last Updated: July 2021  

Electric & Gas Energy Efficiency Programs and SavingsList All

In 2019, Georgia Power reported 313,092 MWh of net electric savings at the meter, which represents 0.37% of its retail sales across the utility’s entire service jurisdiction, not only Augusta. In 2019, Georgia Power spent $55,674,382 on energy efficiency programs, which represents 0.72% of its retail revenue. 

In 2019, Atlanta Gas Light either did not spend or did not report spending or savings on natural gas efficiency programs. These savings and spending figures cover the entire service jurisdiction of both utilities, not just the City of Augusta. 

Georgia Power offers electric efficiency incentives and technical assistance to residential and commercial/industrial customers. Atlanta Gas Light similarly offers natural gas efficiency tips to residential and business customers. 

While no formal partnership is in place between Augusta and its utilities, Georgia Power has interfaced with the City of Augusta in a consultative fashion on renewables and energy efficiency by providing guidance, counsel, and program options. 

Last Updated: July 2021  

Low-Income & Multifamily EE Programs List All

Low-Income Programs 

Georgia Power’s Home Energy Efficiency Assistance Program (HEEAP) is an income-qualified program open to both single-family homeowners, renters, and multifamily property tenants that assists income-eligible customers with energy savings through education and free home-efficiency improvements. Qualifying customers receive a complimentary in-home assessment to identify potential energy-saving opportunities, followed by home-energy improvements performed by a program contractor. The program was approved in the 2019 IRP and provided annual funding of $2.6 million. To qualify for HEEAP, eligible single-family customer’s household income must be at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines. Qualified Multi-family properties must serve a dominate percentage of residents whose household incomes are at or below 200% of federal poverty guidelines. 

Program participants receive a complimentary in-home assessment by a Certified BPI Building Analyst, which includes blower door testing, combustion safety testing, energy education about their residence and the direct install measures for their residence. Participants may receive direct install measures such as LED lighting, a smart programmable thermostat, and water heater insulating jacket and/or pipe wrapping.  Based on the in-home assessment, participants may receive additional services such as attic insulation, air sealing, duct sealing, HVAC replacement, mini-HVAC systems, or HVAC tune-ups. In addition to the HEEAP program, the residential Home Energy Improvement Program (HEIP) has a $500,000 carve out to support income qualified multifamily dwellings as well as targeted efforts within all residential programs. The Small Commercial Direct Install program (SCDI) also focuses on improvements in low-income communities. Georgia Power also provides funding to HopeWorks, which serves income-qualified seniors with a complimentary in-home assessment to identify potential energy-saving opportunities, followed by home-energy improvements.  

Atlanta Gas Light provides funds to third party administrators—such as the Salvation Army and HopeWorks—to support low-income energy efficiency and assistance. AGL administers an appliance relief program which seeks to repair, replace and upgrade unsafe low efficiency gas equipment and customer piping for low-income customers 

In 2019, Georgia Power’s spent $2,022,512 on its low-income programs and served 1,419 households. Data on energy savings in 2019 was not available. In 2019, according to AGL, they spent $1,000,000 on low-income programs. Data on their savings and customers served in 2019 was not available 

At this time, Atlanta Gas Light does not offer energy efficiency programs aimed at low-income customers. 

Multifamily Programs 

Georgia Power offers the EarthCents New Home Program for multifamily properties. This program is designed to provide multifamily developers with incentives to construct more energy-efficient buildings that would be built following standard building codes. Georgia Power’s Residential Home Energy Improvement Program (HEIP) promotes a comprehensive, whole house approach to improving the energy efficiency and comfort of existing homes and includes multiple participation paths to appeal to both multifamily and single family residential customers. HEIP includes a $500,000 carve-out for low-income multifamily properties. 

In 2019, Georgia Power saved 6,397 MWh from its multifamily programs while spending $1,326,350 and serving 512 housing units. 

Atlanta Gas Light does not offer energy efficiency programs targeted at multifamily properties at this time. 

Last Updated: August 2021  

Provision of Energy Data by UtilitiesList All

Georgia Power developed the Automated Benchmarking Tool (ABT) to enable building owners and property managers to retrieve energy consumption data for upload to the ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager. The tool provides aggregate building usage data into a single virtual meter that can be used in Portfolio Manager to generate building benchmark score. Atlanta Gas Light does not provide building managers with automated benchmarking data for multitenant commercial or multifamily buildings. 

The City of Augusta does not provide community-wide energy usage information at the aggregative level for community planning or evaluation purposes. The City of Augusta does not advocate for better access to utility data for ratepayers or the establishment of data-sharing agreements between the city and its utilities. 

Last Updated: July 2021  

Renewable Energy Efforts of Energy UtilitiesList All

Utility Climate Mitigation Goal 

In May 2020, Southern Company set a goal to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 compared to 2007 levels, and set an intermediate goal of a 50% reduction of GHG emission from 2007 levels by 2030. To achieve this intermediate goal, Southern Company will need to reduce emissions by 2.7% annually from 2019 levels. 

City-Led Efforts to Decarbonize the Electric Grid 

At this time, we cannot confirm whether or not the city of Augusta participates in activities or strategies to help spur or encourage more utility-scale or distributed renewable energy generation from its local electric utility, such as testifying in public utility commission proceedings related to renewable energy, creating a formal partnership with the electric utility on renewable generation, or participating in utility planning efforts to increase renewable generation. 

Last Updated: August 2021  

Efficiency Efforts in Water ServicesList All

Citywide Water Efficiency and Goals 

The energy and water utilities do not currently offer joint energy and water efficiency programs. At this point, the Augusta Utilities Department has not established a water savings target or goal, but it does offer water saving tips on its website. 

Water Plant Efficiency and Self-Generation 

The water utility has not set specific energy efficiency targets or strategies, nor does the city’s water system self-generate its own energy. 

Last Updated: July2021  

Transportation
Score: 1.5 out of 30 points
Sustainable Transportation Planning List All

Sustainable Transportation Plan

No data or the city is not pursuing. 

VMT/GHG Target and Stringency

The City of Augusta does not yet have a codified VMT reduction target.

Progress Achieved Toward VMT/GHG Targets

The City of Augusta is not yet tracking community GHG or VMT levels

Last Updated: March 2020

Location Efficiency List All

Location Efficient Zoning 

The City of Augusta does not have any efficiency based zoning policies. 

Residential Parking Requirements

There are several varieties of structure that, within the CBD, are required to provide no more than one parking spot per a certain amount of sq. footage that the structure occupies (4-3 pages 41 and 42).

Location Efficiency Incentives and Disclosures

No data or the city is not pursuing. 

Last Updated: March 2020

Mode Shift List All

Mode Shift Target 

The City of Augusta does not have a codified mode share target.

Progress Toward Mode Shift Target

No data or the city is not pursuing. 

Complete Streets

No policy found. 

Car Sharing

No data or the city is not pursuing. 

Bike Sharing

The City of Augusta does not have its own bikeshare program but Augusta University has 18 bikes at 3 hubs around campus, available for 24/7 use.

Last Updated: March 2020

Transit List All

Transportation Funding

The Augusta Richmond County Transit Department that serves the City of Augusta has received $7,358,991 on average annually between 2014 and 2018. That equates to roughly $12.18 per capita between 2014 and 2018 within the Authority's service area. 

Access to Transit Services

The Transit Connectivity Index measures transit service levels. It is based on the number of bus routes and train stations within walking distance for households scaled by frequency of service. The City of Augusta Transit Connectivity Index value is 1.9, scoring 0 points in the City Scorecard.

Last Updated: March 2020

Efficient VehiclesList All

Vehicle Purchase Incentives

In Georgia, the state legislature ended the $5,000 credit for BEVs in 2016, but it is currently evaluating new incentives for vehicles and charging equipment.

Incentives for EV Charging Stations

Georgia Power customers may be eligible to receive up to a $250 rebate for installing a Level 2 Charger in their home. 

EV Infrastructure

The City has 13 charging stations available for public use, equivalent to 6.601 stations per 100,000 people.

Renewable Charging Incentives

Neither the City of Augusta or any of the utilities that service its resident are providing incentives towards the installation of EV charging infrastrucutre powered by renewables at this time. 

Last Updated: March 2020

Freight System EfficiencyList All

Augusta does not have a sustainable freight transportation plan in place, nor does it have any policies that address freight efficiency.

Last Updated: March 2020

Clean, Efficient Transportation for Low-Income CommunitiesList All

Affordable New TOD Housing Policy 

The Augusta Sustainable Development Agenda (2010) has encouraged TOD in City led efforts, but there are no formalized pro TOD policies that incentivize such development (PG 90). 

Connecting Existing Affordable Housing Stock to Efficient Transportation Options

Neither the City of Augusta nor the transit authority that services the city's residents provide rebates or incentives that better connect low-income residents to efficient transportation options. 

Last Updated: March 2020