South Carolina Towns Invest in Blocks of Green Power

Santee Cooper began offering green power program options to its residential customers in 2001. The towns of Hilton Head Island, Myrtle Beach and Conway have now helped the power company expand its green power portfolio by purchasing blocks of energy for municipal use.

The Town Council in Hilton Head voted to purchase 56 blocks per month of methane-fueled electricity that comes from the generating station at the Horry County Solid Waste Authority’s landfill. One block of green power is 200 kWh of electricity, and Hilton Head purchases the blocks through Palmetto Electric. “We appreciate Palmetto Electric’s vision and concern for the environment and we look forward to the partnership,” Mayor Tom Peeples said. Presently, more than 2,600 Santee Cooper retail customers in Horry, Georgetown and Berkeley counties, along with the State’s Electric Cooperative customers, have purchased more than 10,000 blocks of Green Power from the 3.3 MW power plant, which began operating in September 2001. Because it typically costs more to generate green power than power produced from conventional sources, a per kWh premium of 3 cents is charged to customers. Residential customers may purchase blocks of 100 kWh, and commercial customers may buy blocks of 200 kWh each. All proceeds from Santee Cooper’s Green Power program go toward future renewable energy projects. “The Town of Hilton Head Island participation in our Green Power Program shows their always-evident spirit of community care,” said G. Thomas Upshaw president and CEO of Palmetto Electric. “Their decision to become a Green Power Partner demonstrates their continuing commitment to making our area a great place to work, live and play.”

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