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The Sierra Club of Springfield, Ill., and the city of Springfield have recently finalized an agreement to reduce global warming and increase the use of renewable energy for the city's future.

The plan calls for the city to cut its global warming pollution by 25% below its 2005 levels by 2012 - the equivalent of removing 103,000 automobiles off the highways. In order to reach this goal, Springfield plans to double the wind energy capacity of Illinois by adding 120 MW of new wind turbines.

"Illinois' commitment to power our capital with wind power provides a shining example to other states and local governments of how they can help confront the challenge of global warming," says Verena Owen, the Sierra Club's clean air chairperson for the Illinois chapter.

The city has also agreed to close its oldest and dirtiest Lakeside coal-fired power plant and replace it with a new, cleaner plant.

"This deal is a huge step forward for smart energy solutions and a first in the effort to curb global warming," says Carl Pope, the Siera Club's executive director. "Not only do Springfield residents benefit from cleaner air and water and new ways to save money on their energy bills, but other communities can use this agreement as a model for their own energy and global warming strategies."

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