GREEN MOUNTAIN POWER ¿CHOOSE2BGREEN¿ PROGRAM ALLOWS
27 April 2007
Vermont Utility Also Reduces its Own Carbon Footprint to Zero
Colchester, Vt.... Amid growing concerns over global warming, Green Mountain Power today announced "choose2bgreen," a program that provides customers with a way to neutralize their carbon footprint through renewable power and home heating and driving offsets. Simultaneously, the company announced that it is now carbon neutral in its operations, which includes its offices, facilities, trucks and all business travel.
For further information, please contact Dorothy Schnure, Manager of Corporate Communications, at 802-655-8418, or visit choose2bgreen.greenmountainpower.biz.
"Green Mountain Power is showing the nation that we can address climate change in very real and practical ways," said Jonathan Lash, President of the World Resources Institute of Washington, D.C. and former Secretary of the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources. "By becoming carbon neutral in its operations and offering to help its customers to do the same, Green Mountain Power is modeling the way companies and individuals can take steps to reduce carbon emissions from our everyday activities."
As a company, Green Mountain Power has a long, determined history of working to reduce carbon emissions. In 2002, Green Mountain Power became the first utility in the country to offer customers the option to offset their total home carbon emissions through the CoolHome program. The company uses bio-diesel fuel and hybrid cars in its fleet of vehicles, and major building renovations in 2001 improved energy efficiency and conservation at its offices. Employees are offered incentives to adopt environmentally friendly practices at home, work and on the road, and the Company uses real mugs and plates at the employee caf¿ in an effort to reduce waste. "Even with these measures we still contribute to global warming, so our decision to offset our remaining carbon footprint works in tandem with our continuing efforts to reduce emissions and conserve energy," said Mary Powell, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Green Mountain Power.
"At Seventh Generation, we believe that our everyday purchases can make a big difference in our environment, said Jeffrey Hollender, President and Corporate Responsibility Officer at Seventh Generation, headquartered in Burlington, Vermont. "By offering customers a way to support renewable energy and offset their own carbon footprint, Green Mountain Power is playing a leadership role with its initiatives to improvement our environment."
Choose2bgreen offers Green Mountain Power customers the ability to sign up for three different programs directly on its website: Greener GMP, CoolHome and CoolDriver. GreenerGMP allows customers to purchase energy from certified renewable resources equal to some or all of their monthly use. CoolHome and CoolDriver provide customers with an option to offset their individual carbon footprint associated with heating their homes and driving their cars, respectively. Customers can sign up for one program or all three. Participation ranges from just $3 per month (the cost of offsetting a small car) to approximately $50 per month (the cost of purchasing 100% renewable energy and offsetting both home heating and driving a large SUV).
The CoolHome and CoolDriver offsetting programs are offered in partnership with NativeEnergy, headquartered in Charlotte, Vermont. In addition, the offsets for Green Mountain Power's operations will be purchased from NativeEnergy and paid for by the Company's owner. Funds raised through these programs are used to help finance the construction of renewable energy projects, including Vermont and Northeast-based methane and biomass projects. These projects displace electricity from fossil fuels and reduce other greenhouse gas emissions, making up for the carbon emissions from daily home and travel requirements. The offsets are donated to and retired by Clean Air - Cool Planet, a Northeast-based non-profit environmental leader, which has partnered with Green Mountain Power since 2002.
"While many are talking about effective solutions to the climate crisis, Green Mountain Power is taking action across its business and for its customers by making its office and field operations carbon neutral and providing power from renewable energy sources" said Mindy S. Lubber, President of Ceres. "These are the types of actions needed to address our impact on climate change." Ceres (www.ceres.org) is a national network of investors, environmental organizations and other public interest groups working with companies and investors to address sustainability challenges such as global climate change.
For more than 30 years, Green Mountain Power has worked to protect the environment. From preserving wildlife habitat to constructing wind turbines, the company's environmentally friendly practices have earned it the "Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence," and the "Large Company of the Year" award by the Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. Green Mountain Power is member of Ceres and the Chicago Climate Exchange.
Green Mountain Power (www.greenmountainpower.biz) is an electric utility owned by Northern New England Energy Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Gaz M¿tro, a leading Qu¿bec energy company with a long history of investment in Vermont. Green Mountain Power transmits, distributes and sells electricity and utility construction services in the State of Vermont in a service territory with approximately one quarter of Vermont's population. It serves approximately 90,000 customers.