Twenty Large Energy Buyers Explore Rhode Island Renewable Energy Purchasing Options
PROVEDENCE, R.I. — April 2, 2003 — The Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund announces the formation of the Renewable Energy Customer Aggregation (RECA), a group of twenty Rhode Island businesses and educational institutions committed to exploring options to purchase their electricity from cleaner, renewable energy sources. This group, representing over 400 million kilowatt-hours of annual electricity consumption, is making a move toward bringing renewable energy to the State of Rhode Island.
"This is the first large energy buyer group to explore renewable energy in Rhode Island. Today we take another step toward moving away from our reliance on imported and non-renewable energy sources," said Mr. Kurt Teichert, Environmental Coordinator at Brown University. "These businesses and educational institutions have the ability to make a significant impact on the availability of renewable energy throughout the state. They are community and environmental leaders and the state commends their actions," said Janice McClanaghan, the Chief of Energy and Community Services of The Rhode Island State Energy Office.
Renewable energy, such as wind power and solar power, is energy from sources that naturally replenish throughout time and are inherently cleaner than currently dominant fuel sources: oil, coal and natural gas. Currently, almost all the electricity used in Rhode Island homes, schools and business is produced by burning these fossil fuels, which increase air pollution and adversely affect human health and the environment. These fuels are also subject to huge swings in price, most recently upward.
Rhode Islanders have few options if they wish to obtain their electricity from renewable fuels. The establishment of RECA plays a role in changing this. Its aim is to create a significant demand for clean, renewable energy, prompting utilities and other suppliers of renewable energy technologies to expand their offerings throughout the state. This will pave the way for all of Rhode Island to take advantage of new opportunities to buy renewable power.
Over the next several months RECA will investigate the market for renewable power and attempt to find cost effective purchasing opportunities. This will include reviewing the composition of different energy markets, evaluating purchasing options, meeting with vendors in a facilitated environment, soliciting and evaluating proposals, and beginning to purchase clean energy, either individually or in aggregate.
Members of RECA include the following:
- American Power Conversion
- BJ's Wholesale Club, Inc.
- Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island
- Brown University
- Centreville Savings Bank
- Cranston Print Works Company
- Fidelity Investments
- Hasbro, Inc.
- Howard Industrial Park Association
- Johnson & Wales University
- MetLife Auto & Home
- Newport Athletic Club
- OSRAM SYLVANIA Products, Inc.
- PepsiCo, Inc.
- Roger Williams University
- Swarovski North America Limited
- University of Rhode Island
- Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
The U.S. Postal Service is also participating on a limited basis. One additional member did not yet obtain internal approval to be listed on this press release.
The Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund was established to support and promote renewable energy in Rhode Island. It sponsors several programs that pursue the development of a renewable energy market in Rhode Island. The programs are targeted for Rhode Island's commercial, industrial and residential energy customers.
Think Energy, Inc. is assisting the Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund in the formation and implementation of RECA. Think Energy is a firm that works with companies, schools, and government agencies in developing and using renewable power. Think Energy has facilitated the formation of RECA, and will lead the program members through the process of exploring opportunities to purchase renewable energy and the initial stages of acquiring this energy for their facilities in Rhode Island.
About the Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund: the Utility Restructuring Act of 1996 established The Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund with a mission to increase the role of renewable energy in supplying Rhode Island energy consumers. The Fund is administered by the State Energy Office and supported by an advisory board whose members represent the concerns of the people of Rhode Island, its businesses and educational institutions. For more information about the Fund or RECA, visit www.riseo.state.ri.us or call Ms. Janice McClanaghan (401) 222-3370/(401) 222-6920.
About Think Energy: Think Energy is a consulting firm committed to environmental excellence in the energy sector. Think Energy enables its clients to access the financial, environmental and energy security benefits of renewable and distributed energy systems and products. The company works primarily with large energy consumers, helping them find the most economical strategies for using environmentally friendly sources of energy to run their businesses. Think Energy does this by aiding clients with market intelligence, strategy development, energy procurement, and public relations. For more information about Think Energy or RECA, visit www.thinkenergy.net or call Mr. Mark D. Crowdis at (301) 625-2590.
Ms. Janice McClanaghan (401) 222-3370
Mr. Mark D. Crowdis (301) 625-2590