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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

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  • Wednesday, November 03, 2010

    Georgia Focus: Green Power Switch

    Now more than ever America needs Green Power. Green Power means domestic energy and that means domestic jobs. Green Power means less money going to Iran, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela and more staying right here in America. Green Power means cleaner air, cleaner water, less carbon emission and a stronger economy. And it is something we ALL can be a part of.

    I like this one because it is a link between FDR's programs that helped America so much and the kind of green, local energy solutions we need today. The Tennessee Valley Authority is involved in helping energy customers switch to green energy, including landfill methane gas use (which reduces methane emissions from landfills while generating energy), wind power and solar power. Through the TVA you can, at less than 3 cents per kilowatt-hour more than you currently pay for energy, contribute to reducing carbon emissions, cleaning up the Tennessee Valley environment, and stimulating Georgia's economy. Three important ways of helping your local community, local environment and local economy, all for less than 3 cents per kilowatt-hour of energy you use. When my wife and I made a similar switch in New York, we barely noticed the difference in our energy bill. We also switched to compact fluorescent bulbs at the same time and the energy savings reduced our bill by one-third even with the small increase from buying green energy. Together, we reduced our carbon footprint by about 30% while overall saving money. I highly recommend the switch.

    From Tennessee Valley Authority:

    2010 marks two important anniversaries: the 40th Earth Day and the 10th year of Green Power Switch.
    What’s the impact of those ten years?

    After enlisting 12 distributors and about 3,000 customers its first year, Green Power Switch enters its 10th season with 114 distributors and nearly 12,000 residential and more than 500 commercial buyers.

    * Green Power Switch participants have purchased nearly 500,000 MWh of renewable energy.
    * By doing that, they’ve kept nearly 900 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions out of our atmosphere.
    * That’s equivalent to keeping 85,000 passenger vehicles off the road for a year.
    * It’s also equal to planting over 138,000 acres of trees in the Tennessee Valley region...

    How much does Green Power Switch cost?

    Green Power Switch is sold to residential consumers in 150-kilowatt-hour blocks (about 12 percent of a typical household’s monthly energy use). Each block adds $4 to the customer’s monthly power bills. Consumers may buy as many blocks as they like. In other parts of the country, residential consumers who participate in green power programs pay an extra $2 to $10 per month for green power. Green Power Switch is also marketed to commercial and industrial consumers, who are asked to buy blocks based on the amount of energy they use.
    How does green power benefit the environment?

    The environmental effects of traditional energy sources like coal, natural gas, oil and nuclear power can be significant. Although no source of energy is impact-free, renewable resources create less waste and pollution. In fact, an investment of an additional $8 per month on your power bill buys enough Green Power Switch to equal the environmental benefits of planting an acre of trees in the Tennessee Valley region.

    To sign up, please click here. It is one of the most important changes you can make in your lifestyle this year and it helps create jobs right in Georgia.

    And if the TVA prgram doesn't work for you, here's another program in Georgia offering green energy options for slightly more per kilowatt-hour.

    Renewable Energy in Georgia

    Georgia Power has more than 1,000 megawatts (MW) of renewable generation (mostly hydro) and is working to add additional capacity from renewable generation sources.

    Since 2005, Georgia Power has executed long-term contracts for almost 150 MW of capacity from new renewable generation sources and has received notices of intent from developers to enter into long-term contracts for an additional 450 MW of capacity over the next six years.

    Georgia Power expenditures for capacity and energy from these renewable generation projects may be more than $1 billion over the next 10 years if all of the projects prove viable.

    Georgia Power also received PSC approval to pursue up to three new renewable projects of not more than 30 MW each so long as those projects are at or below avoided costs.

    Customers can sign up for green energy.

    How it works

    * Green Energy is available to residential customers in 100-kilowatt-hour blocks for a 12-month period (about 10 percent of an average monthly residential electricity bill).
    * Each block of Standard Green Energy adds $3.50 (plus tax) to your monthly electricity bill.
    * Georgia Power also offers Premium Green Energy that contains both biomass and a solar energy component at $5.00 (plus tax) per block added to your monthly electricity bill. At least 50 percent of the renewable energy will come from solar resources.
    * Commercial and industrial customers can also participate with a minimum block purchase based on the amount of energy used as defined in the Green Energy Tariff. After meeting the initial minimum block purchase, a large volume purchase option is available at a reduced cost.

    Each block purchased brings more Green Energy into our state. As demand for renewable energy increases, the higher expense of green energy generation may be offset by improved technology and production efficiency. Customers who participate in the program cannot be guaranteed that they will receive the actual kilowatts produced by a green energy generation method, but you can rest assured the green energy you are supporting is being produced and delivered to Georgia Power customers.

    Please go here to sign up.


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