Vermont Business Magazine Vermont Electric Cooperative (VEC) has successfully met, and in some cases exceeded, the first round of statewide renewable energy and fossil fuel reduction requirements under Vermont’s Renewable Energy Standard (RES).
“This is great news – and we’ve achieved this while also delivering on our core mission of safe, affordable and reliable electricity for our members,” said VEC Chief Executive Officer Rebecca Towne. “It takes great partners and engaged members to continue to modernize our energy systems,” she said. “We are proud to be doing our part.”
The RES sets state targets for increasing renewable energy and reducing consumption of fossil fuels, both of which are intended to decrease greenhouse gas emissions. The first reporting period for utilities was for 2017, and the increasingly-stringent requirements continue until 2032. The law is three-pronged, requiring utilities over time to get more of their overall energy from renewable sources; increase the amount of in-state, small-scale, new, renewable generation; and, finally, help customers, or members in VEC’s case, transition away from fossil fuels.
As part of that energy transformation effort, VEC currently offers bill credit incentives for pellet stoves, cold climate heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, electric and plug-in hybrid electric cars, electric forklifts, and zero energy modular (ZEM) homes. VEC can also assist off-grid and underserved homes and businesses to build a line extension or upgrade their service under the Clean Air Program.
VEC’s Co-op Community Solar program also offers members the option of sponsoring, with an up-front payment, solar panels for either 10 or 20 years and receiving a monthly credit on their electric bills. By the end of the sponsorship, the total value of the bill credits exceeds the initial up-front payment.
“As the sources of energy that power the electric grid are getting cleaner, the electric system has emerged as a critical part of the solution to lower emissions for many of our energy needs,” Towne noted. “The state energy goals are challenging, as they should be. They will push VEC to continue to be persistent and creative in the coming years, and that is something we welcome.”
Detailed information about VEC’s power supply portfolio can be found on VEC’s website: www.vermontelectric.coop/power-supply.
About Vermont Electric Cooperative
Vermont Electric Cooperative (VEC), established in 1938, is a non-profit, member-owned electric distribution utility that provides safe, affordable, and reliable electric service to approximately 32,000 members in 75 communities in northern Vermont. Nationally recognized for innovative and advanced use of technology, VEC is the largest locally-owned electric distribution utility in Vermont.
Source: Vermont Electric Cooperative 2.5.2019 www.vermontelectric.coop