NC GreenPower Connects First Source of Wind Energy in Eastern N.C. to Power Grid
April 20, 2007
NAGS HEAD, NC (April 20, 2007) — A partnership between the federal government and North Carolina’s statewide renewable energy program has yielded the first electric grid-tied wind power in Eastern North Carolina. NC GreenPower dedicated the wind turbine, located at Coquina Beach near Nags Head, NC in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore federal park, along with representatives from state government, electric utilities and the National Park Service.
“Today is an important day for North Carolina, for Dare County and for all of us,” said Robert Owens, Jr., commissioner of the North Carolina Utilities Commission and Dare County native, who was on-hand to celebrate the project.”This wind turbine will not only help provide reliable electricity to the facilities at this beach, but it will give something back to the people of North Carolina,” Owens said.The wind turbine was installed by the North Carolina Solar Center in 2005 to provide electricity for a public National Park Service facility at Coquina Beach. It was recently connected as an NC GreenPower producer to the state’s power supply through Dominion North Carolina Power.
“Expanding the energy options that are available to our customers has always been something we have taken seriously at Dominion,” said David Koogler, director of regulation and competition for Dominion North Carolina Power. “It’s exciting to be a part an endeavor that represents the future of North Carolina’s energy.”The turbine is rated at 2.5 kilowatts (kW) and is the first grid-connected wind turbine in the coastal communities of Eastern North Carolina. The 20-meter turbine will generate approximately 6,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) per year, enough to power the park facility it serves as well as providing additional electricity to the state’s electric supply.The project is a positive step toward changing the way North Carolina’s energy will be generated. Renewable energy sources like wind power are safe, environmentally conscious and can provide reliable, cost-effective energy for North Carolina businesses and citizens. NC GreenPower supports wind energy in order to help this vital energy resource grow.”Today we take the first steps to a future powered by cleaner, renewable energy options,” said Robert Goodson, chair of the NC GreenPower board of directors.NC GreenPower is the first multi-utility green power program in the nation. It was created to encourage the development of renewable energy resources, such as the sun, wind and organic matter by individuals and businesses located in North Carolina.Any resident of North Carolina may voluntarily contribute to the NC GreenPower program for as little as $4 per month by signing up through their electric utility. That $4 is used as a subsidiary for producers of renewable energy sources in the state, and will add a block of 100 kilowatt-hours of renewable energy to North Carolina’s power supply.
To date, approximately 10,000 individuals and businesses participate in the NC GreenPower program, contributing to more than 21 million kWh of renewable energy generation per year. The Coquina Beach wind project will add to that volume of cleaner electricity now available to North Carolina utility customers.
“It is indeed a first step,” Goodson said. “Perhaps, not so very long from now, the projects like this will blaze a trail that will change North Carolina and our lives forever.”
About NC GreenPower
NC GreenPower is the nation’s first statewide, multi-utility initiative to encourage the development of renewable energy sources. The program taps into technology that transforms renewable energy sources such as wind, sunshine and landfill methane gas into safe and environmentally sustainable power, giving North Carolinians cleaner options for their energy sources. The N.C. Utilities Commission approved the NC GreenPower program plan in January 2003. NC GreenPower is a subsidiary of Advanced Energy, a Raleigh-based nonprofit corporation that helps utility, industrial and residential customers improve the return on their energy investment.Residential and business customers may voluntarily contribute funds that NC GreenPower will use to purchase power from renewable energy sources in the state. All renewable energy will be generated in North Carolina for the state’s electric supply. Customers also may sign up for the program by contacting their electric provider.