In recent history, highly visible prize competitions have spurred innovative approaches to some of the most difficult challenges facing mankind. Despite the many innovative efficiency measures now in place throughout the country, the United States wastes more than half of all energy produced, according to a report issued by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. In response, Georgetown University set forth an elaborate competition, pitting 60 communities nationwide against each other in an effort to save energy and win $5 million. Eight California cities — Berkeley, Chula Vista, Claremont, Davis, Fremont, Palo Alto, San Mateo and Sunnyvale — are competing for the big prize. These cities have spent the past year rallying their staff, community and utility partners in an effort to demonstrate success in reducing energy consumption. With another year to go before the competition closes in 2017, the California communities are sharing their motivation, best practices and lessons learned from participating in the contest. Continue reading from SEEC’s Institute for Local Government.