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Alternative Power

Now, you can make a difference through the EnviroWatts® program. EnviroWatts is an earth-friendly way to support the use of renewable energy and promote research and development of new, renewable energy sources in Ohio. With each 100-kilowatt hour block of EnviroWatts you purchase, you can be assured that 100-kilowatt hours of electricity were produced from renewable energy sources. In addition, a portion of your purchase helps fund research and development of new renewable energy sources in Ohio.

Why is my Cooperative offering EnviroWatts?

It’s everyone’s responsibility to care for our resources and use them wisely. The Energy Cooperative cares about the environment and renewable energy. Consumer members of Ohio’s electric cooperatives are able to support the production of electricity from renewable energy sources through the EnviroWatts program. This voluntary program is available to residential and business members of participating cooperatives.

What renewable energy source is used to produce EnviroWatts?

Electricity generated for EnviroWatts is produced from landfill methane gas and wind. As organic waste decays, it produces methane gas. Rather than release this gas into the atmosphere, it is collected and used to generate electricity. It is also This not only helps improve the environment, but also decreases our dependence on fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas, and foreign oil.

In further detail: RECs (renewable energy certificates) for the EnviroWatts program come from Buckeye Power’s portfolio of renewable energy resources which in 2010 included a wind farm in Story County, Iowa, and two bio-mass generation projects. Buckeye Power contracted to purchase all the output from the Bridgewater Dairy (1.2 megawatts) and Wenning Poultry (1.8 megawatts) manure-to-methane digester systems, the first of their kind in Ohio. These large-scale agricultural operations constructed anaerobic manure digesters to accept the waste produced by cows and laying hens. Bacteria break down the manure and produce methane gas, which is captured and used to run engine and generator sets which produce electricity. In addition, wind generation from the Story County, IA wind farm is also used as source energy for the program through a purchase power agreement. Depending upon the monthly production variance, these three sources can produce nearly 70 times the energy required for current sales of EnviroWatts.

  • Generation sources for power produced from renewable energy for the 2010 EnviroWatts program are shown below. 
    RECs associated with this production were retired.
Generation Source 100-kWh Blocks Percentage
Bridgewater Dairy, Williams County, OH 562.3 4.7%
Wenning Poultry, Mercer County, OH 205.2 1.5%
Story County Wind Energy Center, IA 10,207.2 93.7%
TOTALS   100%(2)
Story County Wind Energy Center, IA – special bulk purchase
10,000

100%
(2) NOTE:  Percentages do not total to 100% due to rounding.

 

YOU can make a difference!

You can participate in the EnviroWatts program for as little as $2 a month. That’s about the cost of a cup of coffee! By purchasing just one block of EnviroWatts each month for a year, you can have the same environmental impact as not driving your car for three months or not using 2½ barrels of oil.

In further detail: In 2010, 17 Ohio cooperatives made the EnviroWatts program available to their members, although only 14 had reported sales during the year. EnviroWatts is available in 100-kilowatt hour blocks and is sold for $2 per block for any quantity up to and including 25 blocks per month. A bulk purchase option allows cooperative members the ability to purchase in the block quantities as shown below. For 501 or more blocks per month, renewable energy production and/or Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) can be sourced on a case-by-case basis depending upon the desired requirements of the member-consumer. In 2010, there was one such purchase of 10,000 blocks of EnviroWatts.

Number of Blocks Purchased per Month

Cost per Block

Source

26 to 250 blocks

$1.50/block

Renewable energy and/or RECs are used as required. Source and type depend on availability.

251 to 500 blocks

$1.00/block

501 or more blocks

TBD

Renewable energy and/or RECs to be sourced on a case-by-case basis, based upon requirements of consumer-member.

Approximately 62% of the blocks of EnviroWatts sold in 2010 came from bulk purchases by non-residential members. Thirty-eight percent of sales (by quantity) came from residential members who purchased on average a little less than two blocks per month. Only 12 (non-bulk purchase) blocks were sold to non-residential electric cooperative members.

At the end of 2010, there were 343 residential and business members purchasing EnviroWatts. In calendar year 2010, there were 20,976 blocks of EnviroWatts sold in total which constitutes nearly 2,098 megawatt hours of electricity produced from renewable energy sources which was supported by program participants. Funds received from the sales of EnviroWatts are used to help purchase power produced from renewable energy sources for this program.

To learn how you can support renewable energy, contact a Member Services Representative at 1-800-255-6815. Together, we can make a difference!

Net Metering occurs when a member delivers renewable energy onto our electrical system and is billed the difference between the kilowatt hours they put on the electrical grid and what they use off of the electrical grid.

Application for net metering is available for you to download, complete and fax or mail in to our offices. For further information please call: 1-800-255-6815 X1294.