Choosing people power

by Mike Johnson

November 13, 2012

Wind turbines on the Story County 1 Energy Center, just north of Colo. Each turbine has a 1.5-megawatt capacity and contributes to generating electricity for up to 75,000 homes. The NextEra Energy-owned wind farm has been in operation since 2008.

© Karuna Ang / Greenpeace

A wind farm in Iowa that provides energy for 75,000 homes

History took place in Chicago on November 6th as voters paved the way for the largest city-led people power initiative in the country. By pooling together demand for electricity and leveraging the city’s buying power, Chicago residents could see both emissions reductions and cost savings within months. This relatively new concept, known as community choice aggregation, has caught on quickly. Chicago joins hundreds of communities across Illinois, California and Ohio who are saving money while supporting renewable energy and proving that ‘Cleaner is Cheaper.’

This victory follows another historic victory for clean air in Chicago: the October closure of Chicago’s two coal plants, Fisk and Crawford and Cincinnati’s choice of a cleaner alternative to Duke Energy. This aggregation paves the way for a clean energy future to replace these plants. Mayor Emanuel’s administration has rightly incorporated efficiency, renewable energy and reducing carbon emissions and nuclear waste considerations when considering suppliers. To secure the promise of clean power, you can encourage the Mayor’s Office to make the most of renewables and efficiency by leaving a public comment.

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