Green Power Starts Flowing to City of Santa Monica
SANTA MONICA, CA — June 1, 1999 — The City of Santa Monica made history today as green electricity began powering all municipal facilities — from City Hall to street lights — making it the first city in the world to say no to all fossil fuel and nuclear power sources and say yes to clean, renewable energy such as geothermal steam.
"This is a great example of how local governments can purchase green power and work with businesses and residents to take advantage of one of the easiest ways to improve the environment," said V. John White, executive director of Sacramento-based Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies (CEERT). "After all, state citizens look to local elected officials for leadership."
The City of Santa Monica joins a growing number of local governments, corporations, churches and individual consumers who are beginning to choose green energy. With California's newly deregulated electric market, the City of Santa Monica is making a bold statement about the need for consumers — large and small — to take personal responsibility for the environmental impacts of electricity purchases.
Global Green USA — who claims this as the first success of the "Go Green Power" campaign — is launching a public education campaign to convince local businesses and residents to follow Santa Monica's example.
"We view Global Green's work with City of Santa Monica as a new template for green power activists all around the country," said White. "Instead of focusing exclusively on small consumers, green power advocates should look to local opinion leaders to help spread the message about this revolutionary opportunity to clean the air."
"I've been impressed with the vision demonstrated by the City of Santa Monica," said Steven Kelly, executive director of the Renewable Energy Marketing Board (REMB), an organization dedicated to promoting renewable energy purchases. "Local government leaders there understand that green power is a good investment for the environment and the economy."
Kelly noted that local government members of the San Diego Association of Governments would also soon announce major purchases of green power from Commonwealth Energy.
Next year, Commonwealth Energy will begin supplying the City of Santa Monica with electricity from new geothermal facilities located near the Salton Sea. Geothermal energy is produced by harvesting the heat from magma lava that creeps close to the surface of the earth in areas that are seismically or volcanically active.
The world's largest geothermal resource is The Geysers, located about 90 miles northeast of San Francisco in Sonoma and Lake counties. Geothermal steam fields and power plants located here and recently purchased by San Jose-based Calpine Corporation will provide 5 MW of clean electricity to Santa Monica beginning June 1.
CEERT contact: Lori Jablonski (916) 442-7785 http://www.cleanpower.org