SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., Dec. 11, 2002 — The Center for Resource Solutions (CRS) announced Wednesday that Santee Cooper, South Carolina’s state-owned electric and water utility, has achieved national Green Power Accreditation for its Green Power program.
Santee Cooper’s Green Power electricity is generated from methane gas at a landfill, and meets the national and state Accreditation standards for environmental and consumer protection.
The newly accredited Green Power program is available to Santee Cooper’s nearly 135,000 residential and commercial retail customers. Santee Cooper, with headquarters located in Moncks Corner, S.C., is also the primary source of power distributed by the state’s 20 electric cooperatives to approximately 615,000 customers located in all of the state’s 46 counties and plans to make green power available to all of their electric cooperative customers. Horry Electric Cooperative and Santee Electric Cooperative now market Green Power to their customers.
The program gained national Green Pricing Accreditation status by meeting or exceeding a series of stringent guidelines that include the use of renewable resources, appropriate product pricing and marketing, and customer education. Accredited utility programs also undergo an annual independent verification process to document that they have delivered the green power promised to their customers.
Environmental, consumer, and clean energy groups all collaborated through CRS to establish the Accreditation criteria. The national criteria were then reviewed through a local statewide process involving consumer and environmental protection organizations. The S.C. Coastal Conservation League, State Energy Office and the state chapter of the Sierra Club, worked with Santee Cooper and approved the state Accreditation criteria. This strategic collaborative effort ensures high-quality green energy programs.
“The Green Pricing Accreditation Initiative is part of efforts by consumer and environmental protection groups across the country to help use the power of customer choice to promote renewable energy and protect the environment,” said Jan Hamrin, CRS Executive Director.
“Santee Cooper is a pioneer in green power pricing in South Carolina,” said Stephen Smith, Executive Director of Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. “Santee Cooper is offering the first green power product in the state and the second product to be accredited in the Southeast. Customer demand for clean electricity is turning the Southeast into a regional renewable energy powerhouse. We believe Accreditation is the best way to ensure that electricity customers get the renewable energy they are promised.”
Santee Cooper’s green electricity is offered in blocks of 100 kilowatt-hours each to residential customers who pay a monthly premium of $3 per block. Commercial customers are offered Green Power in 200-kwh blocks at $6 per block. All the premiums collected will be used to fund future renewable energy projects.
Santee Cooper’s Green Power Program product is generated from a project located at the Horry County Solid Waste Authority landfill near Conway, S.C. which began operation on Sept. 4, 2001.
“Santee Cooper is proud to be South Carolina’s leader in the area of renewable energy,” said Santee Cooper President and Chief Executive Officer John Tiencken. “Our commitment to Green Power is an extension of our environmental stewardship.”
More information on the Green Pricing Accreditation Initiative and its standards is available at http://www.resource-solutions.org. Information on the Santee Cooper Green Power Program is available at http://www.santeecooper.com/greenpower.
Based on generation, Santee Cooper is the nation’s third largest publicly owned electric utility among state, municipal and district systems.