North Carolina Focus: Green Power Switch
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 the North Carolina 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 North Carolina.
And if the TVA prgram doesn't work for you, here's another program in North Carolina offering green energy options for slightly more or slightly less per kilowatt-hour.
Available to Dominion North Carolina Power customers, NC GreenPower is an independent, non-profit program that provides an easy and effective way to protect and improve the quality of the environment. The program allows participants to contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions and to the production of renewable energy (e.g., solar, wind, small hydro and biomass materials) for North Carolina's power supply.
NC GreenPower offers two contribution options:
This option subsidizes the production of green power. Customers can purchase one or more blocks of clean energy for North Carolina in one of the following:
* General Market (most residential and small commercial customers)
Green power is produced from renewable sources, such as wind, solar or methane sources. Customers can make a contribution of $4.00 per block (100 kilowatt-hours of energy).
* Large-Volume Market (for purchase by any customer)
Renewable energy is produced from a wider range of sources, such as biomass and small hydro, at a price comparable with out-of-state green energy tags. Customers can make a contribution of $2.50 per block (100 kilowatt-hours), but a minimum of 100 blocks must be purchased per month.
CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP Start helping North Carolina and the environment now.
I'd also like to highlight Appalachian Voices' Repowering NC Campaign.
This is a local, grassroots effort to wean America off oil from Saudi Arabia, Iran and Venezuela and instead use LOCAL energy solutions that create LOCAL jobs while helping the local environment.
Repowering North Carolina Coalition
We are working in coalition with several other grassroots organizations to develop an ambitious vision to get North Carolina moving towards a cleaner energy future. We will be encouraging individuals, organizations, businesses and local governments to endorse a resolution with that goal in mind and leverage regulatory and legislative changes to make a cleaner energy future a reality.
Moving Away From Coal-Fired Electricity
Our work in opposing Duke Energy’s Cliffside coal-fired plant culminated in reducing the plant in half and created an atmosphere in which construction of new coal plants will be near impossible in North Carolina. We also made a strong case to move away from mountaintop removal coal, as evidenced by this quote from Jim Rogers, CEO of Duke Energy:
“I’m under incredible pressure on mountaintop mining…I’m doing the math now and looking to determine my contracts and posing the question to my team, what if we made a policy decision that we’re not going to buy coal as a consequence of mountaintop mining. I actually can see a future where coal is not in the equation in 2050.”
We will continue to advocate that capital investments be made in renewable energy and energy efficiency, rather than in coal-fired power plants.
Learn more about wind energy in North Carolina
In Western North Carolina alone, there is enough responsibly-sited wind power to easily replace the Cliffside plant. However, North Carolina is currently facing the most extreme, anti-wind energy legislation in the country, in the form of Senate Bill 1068.
Read more here
BACK TO PROGRESSIVE DEMOCRAT NEWSLETTER MAIN PAGE