First County in New York Purchases Wind Power

Are state counties the next governing bodies to help boost new renewable energy projects? New York’s Livingston County plans on purchasing 10 percent of its electricity from pollution free, wind-generated electricity making it the first county in New York State to purchase wind energy for a portion of its electricity use.

Genesco, New York – July 30, 2004 [] Livingston County joins 23 New York State towns and villages who are accelerating the development of the state’s renewable energy industry by voluntarily purchasing wind energy for a portion of their electric needs. Livingston announced the unanimous vote that took place on July 14, 2004 by the Livingston County Board of Supervisors to purchase NewWind Energy for 10% of their electricity use from RG & E and Community Energy, Inc. While the Congress has yet to express strong interest in mandating a national Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), many states have enacted their own state-wide RPS. Counties however, are another story. While other counties have passed resolutions or made statements that they would be purchasing various percentages of renewable energy at some point in the future, Livingston County’s said their contract represents the first actual purchase of wind power by any county government in New York State. “We are honored to be the first county in New York State to join 23 municipalities in purchasing wind energy,” said James Merrick, the Chairman of the Livingston County Board of Supervisors. “Clean renewable energy may cost a bit more to use, but it is well worth the small premium. We can’t afford not to support the development of pollution-free, New York-generated, renewable energy alternatives at this great time of need” The Livingston County purchase provides the environmental benefit of eliminating over 400,000 pounds of Carbon Dioxide emissions, 1,500 lbs. of Sulfur Dioxide emissions and 500 lbs. of Nitrogen Oxides emissions. The carbon dioxide offset is equivalent to the cleansing effect of over 30,000 trees or by not driving over 450,000 miles. The wind energy for the county is supplied from the Fenner Wind Project in Madison County that is comprised of 20, 1.5 MW turbines.
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