Environmental Protection

DOE Presents Green Power Supplier Awards

The U.S. Department of Energy, along with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Center for Resource Solutions, honored 26 leading corporations, renewable energy suppliers and industry pioneers last week for helping advance the nation's green power markets.

The awards were presented at a ceremony in conjunction with the Renewable Energy Markets Conference 2009 in Atlanta, Ga., on Sept. 14.

The winners included:

  • Non-Utility Green Power Supplier of the Year: 3Degrees and Bonneville Environmental Foundation.
  • Utility Green Power Program of the Year: Central Vermont Public Service Corporation – Cow Power™, Madison Gas and Electric Company, and Puget Sound Energy.
3Degrees originates and markets Green-e® Energy Certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) and Verified Emission Reductions from projects around the world. It also works in partnership with utilities to offer residential and business customers a voluntary green power option. The company sources RECs from over 300 renewable generation facilities across the United States. It has conducted REC supply-side business in 34 U.S. states, supporting all eligible renewable energy resources.

Founded in Portland, Ore., in 1998, the Bonneville Environmental Foundation aspires to achieve significant environmental benefits by re-investing the profits from the sale of its green power products in renewable energy development. In 2008, BEF provided 950,000 MWhs of renewable energy certificates to its 350 commercial and 400 residential customers. Since 2000, the foundation and its partners have supported over 2.5 million MWh of renewable energy generation throughout the United States.

Central Vermont Public Service Corporation – Cow Power™, developed by Central Vermont Public Service, is one of the nation's first farm-to-consumer renewable energy programs that uses methane-based power generation from cow manure. CVPS Cow Power™ promotes a manure management system that provides clean, renewable energy and strives to help solve numerous environmental problems. Since the program's inception in 2004, a total of over 42 million kWh have been sold through customers' enrollment. In 2008, sales increased by over 1.3 million kWh (over 10 percent) from 2007.

Madison Gas and Electric Company is a regulated, investor-owned utility and the main subsidiary of MGE Energy, Inc. In 2008, MGE expanded its Wind Power program to 152 million kWh and renamed the expanded program "Green Power Tomorrow." By adding new wind resources in Wisconsin and local, customer-owned solar systems to the program supply, MGE was able to offer more customers the option to support renewable energy development, while also reducing the price premium from 2.68 cents/kWh to 1 cent/kWh above standard electricity rates. As a result of the lower premium individual, the number of participants purchasing 100 percent green power has grown from 20 percent in 2007 to 70 percent in 2009. The addition of wind resources has also allowed MGE to create a buyback rate program, Clean Power Partners, which has helped stimulate a local solar market.

Puget Sound Energy (PSE) has offered its Green Power Program to the Pacific Northwest since 2002, providing both commercial and residential customers the option to participate. In 2008, the program serviced more than 20,000 participants, and produced more than 290 million kWh in sales. The 2008-2009 standard rate resource mix includes 71 percent wind, 28 percent biomass, and 1 percent solar. All facilities supported by the program are located in the Pacific Northwest, with locations in Washington, Oregon and Idaho. The program's biomass resource includes methane digesters, bioenergy facilities, and landfill gas. PSE's program offers customers the option to match 100 percent of its electricity usage with green power at an incremental cost of 1.25 cents/kWh, or buy blocks.

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