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Energy & Environment

Lyles Asks For More Federal Support For Charlotte's Energy, Transit Goals

Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles speaks to a congressional subcommittee Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol.

Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles testified Wednesday in Washington before a U.S. House subcommittee on energy and climate change. 

While most of the attention was on the House’s impeachment inquiry into President Trump, Lyles talked about Charlotte’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

Those efforts include the Strategic Energy Action Plan, which, among other things, strives to have all city vehicles and facilities be fueled by 100% zero-carbon sources by 2030. Lyles asked the representatives for more federal funding.

"We need more money and research for renewable energies. We need money to retrofit our existing facilities. We need funding for electric vehicles – especially for our buses," Lyles said. "We need infrastructure money to make choices that we can have that will make a difference. We need support for mass transit. And we need support for our light rail system."

Charlotte is planning to build a 26-mile light-rail line from Matthews to Belmont and is unsure of how it will pay for the line. The city is hoping the federal government will pay for half of the construction costs, as it did with both phases of the Blue Line.