|Green Power - Energy Alternatives
How long can men thrive between walls of brick,
walking on asphalt pavements, breathing the fumes of coal and of oil, growing, working,
dying, with hardly a thought of wind, and sky, and fields of grain, seeing only machine-made
beauty, the mineral-like quality of life?
~Charles A. Lindbergh, Reader's Digest,
PSE's Green Power Business Program
Puget Sound Energy's (PSE) Green Power Program is one of the top 10 Green Power Programs in the
country (source: National Renewable Energy Laboratory, 12/2007). PSE believes renewable energy
resources should be an integral part of our overall supply portfolio to meet the increasing demand
for energy from our customers, diversify our fuel sources, enhance fuel price stability, reduce
incremental air emissions, and stimulate local economic development. As demand for electricity
increases, PSE is focused on expanding the use of power generated from renewable, environmentally
sound resources, such as solar, wind and biomass energy.
In February 2009, Linda Fels and Deb Cruz, Green Sanctuary Co-Chairs, presented a proposal to the
Board on signing up as a 100% Leadership Partner in Puget Sound's Green Power Program and the Board
approved the proposal. This is a program where we buy renewable energy equal to the amount of
electricity we use. PSE purchases renewable energy credits from regional renewable energy facilities
on our behalf and this guarantees that electricity from wind, solar, and biomass facilities is
delivered to the regional power pool (the grid). All of the renewable energy PSE's Green Power
customers purchase is produced here in the Pacific Northwest and fed into the regional grid.
Renewable sources under the Green Power Program include:
• The Baker River Hydroelectric Project located on a tributary of the Skagit River in northwest
• The Wild Horse Wind and Solar Facility located in Kittitas County, Washington
• The Hopkins Ridge Wind Project located Columbia County, Washington
• The Snoqualmie Falls Hydroelectric Project located about 30 miles east of Seattle on the
Cascade Mountains' western slope.
• The Electron Hydroelectric Project located about 25 miles southeast of Tacoma in the western
foothills of Mount Rainier
• PSE Biomass Project located in Lynden, Washington, at the VanderHaak Dairy Digester
BUF joins several other Whatcom County business and organizations as leadership partners.
- 2020 Engineering
- Bellingham Unitarian Fellowship
- City of Bellingham
- Kulshan Cycles
- Mallard Ice Cream & Café
- McNett Corporation
- POS Guys (MGM Solutions)
- POS-X, Inc.
- Price Jones LLC
- Quicksilver Photo Lab
- Recycling & Disposal Services, Inc.
- Sanitary Service Company
- Steele Financial Services, Inc.
- Whatcom County
- Whatcom Transportation Authority
PSE's Green Power Residential Program
PSE offers two renewable power options to its electric customers. Both options allow you to buy safe, clean,
renewable energy – which promotes resource diversity and reduces reliance on fossil fuels.
100 Percent of Your Monthly Usage:
- our renewable energy purchase is based on your total monthly usage. The additional cost is $0.0125,
or just over a penny, per kWh.
- For the average energy-efficient household using 800 kWh monthly, green power usage would only
cost about $10.00 more per month on your electric bill.
- The environmental benefit is equivalent to taking a car off the road for a year.*
- PSE’s Green Power Program lets you purchase renewable energy in 160 kilowatt-hour (kWh) blocks for a
fixed cost of $2.00 per block per month, with a minimum purchase of $4.00 per month.
- You can buy as many blocks as you'd like, allowing you to match a portion or all your energy usage
to new renewable resources around the region.
Sign up for Green Power at http://www.pse.com/energyEnvironment/renewableenergy4/Pages/greenPowerSignUp.aspx
Types of Energy
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Whatcom Community Energy Challenge
In 2010, Whatcom County was awarded a formula grant in the amount of $470,000 by the U.S. Department
of Energy through the Recovery Act, in the form of an Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant
(EECBG). This grant has been used to establish the Whatcom Community Energy Challenge (CEC). The CEC
is a partnership of Bellingham-based nonprofits Opportunity Council and Sustainable Connections that
will work to reduce the amount of electricity and natural gas used by area households and small businesses.
The challenge will make energy-efficiency efforts easier from beginning to end, and affordable.
Briefly, prospective participants contact either Sustainable Connections or the Opportunity Council and
request to be included in the program. Participants will then be scheduled for a home energy assessment.
Based off this assessment, participants will be provided a customized Energy Action Plan. Participants
will also be provided assistance in reducing energy use and finding affordable upgrades, financing
opportunities, cash incentives, reliable contractors, quality assurance, and ongoing technical assistance.
There is a fee for this program, so be sure to ask what the current fee is.
Other elements within the program include:
- Expert Energy Assessment
- Commerical Conservation Specialist
- Home Energy Advisor
- Customized Energy Action Plan
- Workforce Training
- Reliable Contractors
- Quality Assurance
- Cash Incentives
- Loan Loss Reserve
- Preferential Term Financing
For more information on the Community Energy Challege, contact either Sustainable Connections (647-7093) or the
Opportunity Council (671-0541). Also visit the CEC website
http://sustainableconnections.org/energy/energychallenge/index_html or the blog
Conoco Phillips Ferndale Refinery Delayed Reporting Diesel Spill To State
10,000 gallons leaked into one of the company's stormwater retention ponds on Oct. 27th.
November 3, 2010
ANACORTES —A refinery in Ferndale failed to report to the state Department of Ecology, after an underground
pipeline leaked about 10,500 gallons of diesel fuel. The diesel ran through ditches and into a stormwater
retention pond on refinery property.
Ecology says ConocoPhillips Ferndale Refinery failed to properly report the spill Wednesday, Oct. 27,
according to the refinery's oil spill readiness or "contingency" plan. The refinery quickly responded to
the spill - but didn't report it to Ecology's regional office in Bellevue. That caused a delay of several
hours in Ecology's response.
The pond is not part of the refinery's treated industrial wastewater system. It collects stormwater runoff
from roadways and undeveloped wooded areas and drains into the Strait of Georgia. No diesel spilled into
marine waters. The Ecology Department says its investigation into the spill and the response to it will
To prevent delays in responding to future spills, Ecology has issued an administrative order to ConocoPhillips,
requiring the refinery to:
- Analyze how the lapse in properly reporting the incident to the state occurred.
- Review the incident to see where improvements to response and preparedness could be made.
- Review the contingency plan to see if it requires revisions or updates.
- Retrain staff.
- Participate in a future spill readiness drill, which could be unannounced.