Are you concerned about the environment? What about your carbon footprint? Do you worry about declining reserves of natural resources? In response to the growth of “green” conscious consumers, many retail energy suppliers have begun offering products that address the impact energy consumption has on mother earth and on geopolitical balances . Customers can now save money on their utility bills while having the smallest impact on the environment. Both electric and gas suppliers now offer green products as part of the consumer choice program.
Benefits of green energy:
“Green” energy contributes to world energy security, reduces dependence on fossil fuel resources and provides opportunities for reducing greenhouse gases. Green energy is the provision of energy such that it meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. The challenge is to broaden the market base for continued growth worldwide.
We are committed to promoting green energy programs, and sharing the responsibility with our clients to work with suppliers favoring sources of energy that are environmentally friendly and non-polluting.
Deregulation benefits clean power industry:
In general, energy choice and competition has made it easier for generators to introduce and integrate green sourced energy. Competitive markets offer advantages to clean energy providers, like transparent and real-time pricing, fair and clear rules, a wide geographic footprint, and access to long-distance transmission systems.
What makes energy green?
Generally speaking, It can be a number of factors.
1) The energy was produced or extracted using renewable resources (I.E. wind power)
2) Carbon offsets are acquired for all or a portion of the energy use.
3) REC’s (renewable energy credits) are purchased by consumer.
4) Energy from generation that greatly reduces air pollutants.
5) Gas or fuel from non-hydrocarbon sustainable sources.
6) Reclaimed energy from waste or secondary sources.
7) Energy produced with high efficiencies methods.
Many energy retailers offer green energy products or a blend of green and brown (conventional) energy. Some even allow you to choose what percent of green energy to purchase, as it usually is more costly than conventionally produced energy.
Renewable energy are energy sources can be replenished in a short period of time. The five renewable sources of electricity generation are:
- Biomass (including wood and wood waste, municipal solid waste, landfill gas, and biogas, ethanol, and biodiesel)
- Water (hydropower)
What Is Renewable Gas?
Renewable gas matches the chemical composition and pipeline quality specifications as conventional natural gas, but instead of being sourced from drilled wells and other conventional sources, it will be sourced by the capture of gas from sources that regenerate their supply. Examples of such renewable supply are gas generated from municipal landfills, waste water treatment facilities, and animal waste lagoons. Purchasing gas from renewable sources helps to promote the development of new and existing renewable energy projects and decrease the reliance on fossil fuels.
Renewable Energy Certificate (REC’s)
When a generator produces energy from renewable sources (solar, wind, biomass, etc), along with the associated renewable and environmental attribute, the electricity itself is typically sold into the grid at some market value. The associated renewable and environmental attributes are captured as a REC, which represents one megawatt hour of electricity generated from renewable sources and delivered to the grid, is sold separately and has its own market value. RECs can be “counted” only once toward a consumer’s supply and are then retired on behalf of the retail consumer of the RECs. The purchase of RECs ultimately results in an added cash flow for renewable generation—an important financial incentive for the developer/owner of the renewable generation facility. The purchase of RECs promotes the continued development of renewable energy resources and the displacement of electricity generated from fossil fuels.
Green-e Climate is the nation’s first certification program for carbon offsets sold to consumers on the retail market. It is a voluntary certification program that sets consumer protection and environmental integrity standards for greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions sold in the voluntary market. It is administered by Center for Resource Solutions, a nonprofit based in San Francisco, CA.
Ecologo- Another organization that certifies green/sustainable products is Ecologo. Ecologo certifies environmental leaders across North America in more than 120 categories. Founded in 1988, EcoLogo is a well-respected and established multi-attribute environmental standard and certification mark. EcoLogo builds trust by providing scientific credibility and proof of environmental leadership. They also provide customers—public, corporate and consumer—with assurance that the products and services bearing the logo meet stringent environmental standards that have been verified by a third party auditor. By certifying environmental leaders in over 120 product categories, EcoLogo helps customers find and trust the world’s most sustainable products.
EPA Green Power Partnership-The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that encourages organizations to buy green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with purchased electricity use. The Partnership currently has hundreds of Partner organizations voluntarily purchasing billions of kilowatt-hours of green power annually. The EPA actively recognizes and promotes participating companies that meet the minimum guidelines.