Illinois Initiates Green Power Standard

A coalition of leading Illinois environmental and consumer groups today released a green power standard to provide consumers and electricity suppliers with a consistent understanding of what constitutes clean power. Business and governmental consumers can now shop for power in the competitive market. Residential consumers may have choices among suppliers, starting in May 2002.

CHICAGO, Illinois 2002-03-26 [SolarAccess.com] The coalition includes, The Environmental Law & Policy Center, the Citizens Utility Board, Business and Professional People for the Public Interest, the Illinois Public Interest Research Group, the Center for Neighborhood Technology, Citizen Action/Illinois, the Sierra Club-Illinois Chapter, and Sustain. “Let’s make sure that business and residential consumers choosing to buy green power don’t get green scammed. We want to see real green power that helps to produce real environmental benefits,” said Howard Learner, Executive Director of the Environmental Law and Policy Center. “This standard will define for consumers what is legitimately green power. A consistent standard for make the competitive playing field clear for both Illinois electricity suppliers and for the public.” “Customers should know what they are getting, and they should get what they pay for” said Martin Cohen, Executive Director of the Citizens Utility Board. “This standard ensures that consumers will know that something sold as “green power” really is green power.” According to the new standard, green power in Illinois will need to meet three tests. First, it must be from new Renewable Energy sources. Second, at least two-thirds of the mix should come from wind and solar power, with the remainder from other Renewable Energy sources such as landfill gas, small hydro, and biomass. And third, the power purchase must create clear air quality benefits for Illinois. “Wind and solar power are key to the clean energy future that Americans want,” stated Jennifer Johnson, Conservation Organizer for the Sierra Club. “We’re excited to recommend that our members and the general public buy electricity from clean sources that meet this definition instead of from dirty coal plants causing global warming. This is the first time the Sierra Club has endorsed a Green Power standard in any state, and we look forward to the new clean power it can bring.”

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