A recent report from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) reveals that as of the end of 2015, 13.8% of total electricity generation in the United States now comes from renewable sources. The report, the 2015 Renewable Energy Data Book, is produced for the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
Here in Norwich, NPU is well ahead of the national average. With the construction of our two community solar gardens and the tradition of our hydropower capabilities along the Shetucket River, our electricity portfolio is nearly 20% renewable.
Our renewable strategy balances two important considerations: convenience and cost savings. Instead of dealing with an unknown or unproven third party from out of town, NPU provides solar and hydro power for our customers seamlessly – and without having to pay a premium.
Owning and managing this significant portion of our energy supply saves NPU and our electric ratepayer’s money every year. Every electron of electricity generated here in Norwich is energy that does not have to be purchased – and delivered – from elsewhere, which helps keep our rates stable.
The interest and utilization of renewable energy will certainly continue into the future. The growing ‘green’ industry will continue to be the source of a great deal of discussion and activity among policy makers in Washington and Hartford, with both problems and opportunities likely to emerge in the years ahead.
Regardless of the changes in approaches or technology related to renewable energy that may develop, NPU remains committed to providing all our customers with locally produced, renewable energy in the days to come.