Innovative Clean Energy Strategies of Rural Electric | Alliance to Save Energy

Innovative Clean Energy Strategies of Rural Electric

Alliance to Save Energy's Events

Featuring leading experts and stakeholders in the efficiency community, Alliance events move us toward our goal of a more energy-efficient world through starting dynamic conversations on principal issues, launching new initiatives, and honoring champions.

Innovative Clean Energy Strategies of Rural Electric

Thursday, July 30, 2015 : 10:00am
Thursday, July 30, 2015 : 11:30am
485 Russell Senate Office Building : Washington, DC

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The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) invites you to a briefing featuring rural electric cooperatives (co-ops) which are taking significant action on energy efficiency and renewable energy. Member-owned, not-for-profit electric co-ops are typically smaller than investor-owned utilities, and they are less likely to have significant capital reserves or other resources to implement clean energy programs. But their small size and strong relationships with their member-consumers allow co-ops to be nimble and innovative, particularly with programs directly involving co-op members. As a result, many electric co-ops around the country have become successful clean energy laboratories.  

This briefing will feature leaders from distribution co-ops and generation and transmission (G&T) co-ops discussing their clean energy innovations, including community solar programs, demand response initiatives, energy efficiency financing, and more. The speakers will describe the impacts and challenges of each strategy, and why these strategies work for their members.

Speakers for this forum are:

  • Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Co-chair, Congressional Farmer Cooperative Caucus @amyklobuchar
  • Kenneth Colburn, Board Member, New Hampshire Electric Cooperative @kacolburn
  • Martin Lowery, Executive Vice President of Member and Association Relations, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association @NRECAN
  • Gary Connett, Director of Member Services, Great River Energy (Minnesota) @GREnergyNews
  • Curtis Wynn, President & CEO, Roanoke Electric Cooperative (North Carolina) @makeithpn2018

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) found that co-ops had 95 megawatts of solar capacity online in 34 states as of October 2014, with another 144 megawatts in development. EESI has identified at least 50 co-ops in 23 states offering residential on-bill financing programs, where members repay their co-op for energy project investments via their utility bills, often using the savings achieved by the project. While many older programs targeted heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) replacements, newer programs include broad energy efficiency and clean energy opportunities.

Member-owned co-ops are an integral part of America's rural communities, providing power to approximately 42 million people in 47 states. There are nearly 850 distribution co-ops and 65 generation and transmission co-ops in the United States. Electric co-ops reach 12 percent of the nation's population, while delivering 10 percent of the total kilowatt-hours sold in the United States each year.

Free and open to the public

For more information, contact:  John-Michael Cross at / (202) 662-1883




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