Plan initiatives are helping fund solar installation. | Photo by Sundance Power
Last week, the Blue Horizons Project, a program of nonprofit Green Built Alliance, released the Strategic Plan for Transitioning Buncombe County to 100% Renewable Energy by 2042. Created with input from the community, clean energy experts, BIPOC focus groups, and City of Asheville + Buncombe County leaders, the plan examined the area’s current energy use and developed a strategy for the renewable energy transition (hence its name).
The full plan is very detailed and some 52 pages, so let’s break down the basics about where Buncombe County goes from here.
Start with the big picture. The plan established six pathways for renewable energy transition. The technical pathways embrace energy efficiency, electrification, and greening the grid while the action pathways implement the initiatives, enact policy changes and policy advocacy, and build community engagement.
All depend on each other — one technical pathway makes another one easier, and all action areas need to be included each step of the way.
Then take action. These pathways are pretty broad, and there are a lot of initiatives that could get us there, so the plan’s committee narrowed a long list into near-term priorities. These priority initiatives fall into six categories and cover a wide area, like increasing walkable communities + workplaces, installing solar for low-income households, switching to electric vehicles, and even expanding some Duke Energy programs.
The plan was developed with the belief that 100% renewable energy will benefit the community — by combating the climate crisis, protecting ecosystems, and reducing pollutants. And since the community is central to the plan’s motivation, it’s also central to the implementation.
That means you. Right now, you can get involved by attending a Community Council meeting or joining a subcommittee. You can also volunteer with various projects or donate to the Clean Energy Dream Campaign.
15th Annual Music Video Asheville Awards | Wednesday, Sept. 13 | 5:30 p.m. | Salvage Station, 468 Riverside Dr., Asheville | $12-$15 | Get ready for live music, an awards ceremony, video screenings, and a red carpet (so come dressed to impress).
Thursday, Sept. 14
9th Annual Under the Stars Fundraiser | Thursday, Sept. 14 | 6-10 p.m. | Highland Brewing Co., 12 Old Charlotte Hwy., Ste. 200, Asheville | $65-$80 | Support the Asheville Museum of Science during a night of dinner, drinks, auctions, and rooftop stargazing.
Hamlet: The Requiem | Thursday, Sept. 14 | 8-9:30 p.m. | Ella Asheville, 81 Broadway St., Asheville | $30 | This immersive retelling of the tragedy is a fresh take on a timeless play.
Friday, Sept. 15
AVL Revue: Back to School | Friday, Sept. 15 | 7-10 p.m. | Story Parlor, 227 Haywood Rd., Asheville | $20-$25 | Celebrate the highs and lows of the school year kickoff with this night of storytelling.
Pippin | Friday, Sept. 15-Sunday, Oct. 8 | Times vary | Asheville Community Theatre, 35 E. Walnut St., Asheville | $18-$36.50 | Step into a magical and mysterious world of self-discovery during this Broadway classic.
An Extraordinary Tasting Adventure | Friday, Sept. 15 | 12-5 p.m. | VICARIO Distillery and Farm, 800 Old Jones Rd., Greer | $15 | Enjoy a tour and tasting experience of the award winning VICARIO gin and 18 unique liqueurs.*
Saturday, Sept. 16
Heritage Day | Saturday, Sept. 16 | 10 a.m.-4 p.m. | Folk Art Center, 382 Blue Ridge Parkway, Asheville | Free | The old-time festival celebrates the traditions of yesteryear — quilting, sheering, blacksmithing, and lots more.
Women’s Market After Dark | Saturday, Sept. 16 | 6-9 p.m. | The Mule, 131 Sweeten Creek Rd., Asheville | Free | This market, part of the Women to the Front Festival, highlights the artistic, culinary, and wellness contributions of local women.
Starting Sunday, Sept. 17, Patton Avenue between Ann Street and French Broad Avenue will be fully closed between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m., and one eastbound lane of Patton will be closed between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. The City expects the closure, which is part of the stormwater improvement project, to last about two weeks.
The Pennsylvania-based Voodoo Brewing is planning to open a location at the former site of 12 Bones South (3578 Sweeten Creek Rd.). The brewpub is slated to open its doors sometime this fall. (Ashevegas Hot Sheet)
Black Mountain’s Town Commissioners have unanimously voted on a resolution to call on Buncombe County to pass a single-use plastic bag and styrofoam takeout container ban. Black Mountain is the second municipality in the county to take up the resolution; Woodfin also voted similarly back in August.
As part of Welcoming Week, YMCA of WNC will be hosting a bilingual community health fair today, Wednesday, Sept. 13, through Thursday, Sept. 14 at 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and Friday, Sept. 15 at 8:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Healthcare and wellness experts will come together at the Reuter Family YMCA.
Get ready to ride. Buncombe County Parks & Recreation is hosting its Bike Safety Rodeo on Saturday, Sept. 23 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Buncombe County Training Facility. This free event is tailored to ages 5-15 and designed to teach essential bike safety skills in a fun, engaging way.
In an exploration of the history of modular synthesis, Michelle Moog-Koussa, executive director of the Bob Moog Foundation, will interview experts Chris Meyer and Dave Rossum. The event on Wednesday, October 4 at 7 p.m. will take place at Citizen Vinyl and feature a talk, Q+A, and a special concert.
Refinance rates are skyrocketing. But home equity rates remain relatively low — which means that now is a great time to borrow against your home. Calculate your payment.*
Racing and swimming pigs, Mountain Music Festival, and a new swirling + spinning ride? Count us in. The 2023 NC Mountain State Fair is here through this Sunday, Sept. 17, and features fun rides, heritage artisans, livestock shows, entertainment, competitions, and delicious food. Read:There’s fun for the whole family. Get tickets.*
Dramatic and moody, yet tranquil and grounded. Are we describing ourselves, or Sherwin-Williams’ Color of the Month for September 2023? Discover the colorfor your next home project.^
We’re counting down the days until autumn colors make an appearance. | Photo by photofern.wnc
We know the question on your mind, Ashevillians — when’s it going to get cool? Thanks to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center, we know what temperatures and precipitation trends to expect in our city for September, October, and November. While exact weather conditions typically can’t be predicted more than a week in advance, here’s a seasonal outlook to help you prepare for what fall will bring.
Reminder: The first day of fall is on Saturday, Sept. 23.
Think warm. This fall, Asheville has a 33-40% chanceof temperatures being higher than normal. We’re not breaking out the sweaters just yet.
Expect slightly more precipitation. Asheville has a 40-50% chance of seeing higher-than-average rainfall amounts this fall. Snow in the fall is very unlikely, so it might just be time to invest in some galoshes.
No drought is expected for Asheville this season (which is good news for the leaves).
In my book, it’s never too early to plan for spooky season — so I couldn’t have been happier when I heard that the 13th Surreal Sirkus Arts Festival is back at Pack Square Park on Saturday, Oct. 28 from 1 to 10 p.m. Nothing like experimental circus arts under a lunar eclipse for Halloween weekend.