Building clean energy from renewable resources is the only way to wean us off the limited—and dirty—fossil fuels we dig and pump out of the ground every day to satisfy our electricity needs. In 2017 about 30 of the electricity we generate in the U.S. came from coal, and only about 15 percent comes from renewable energy from wind, sunlight, rivers and streams, and geothermal.* But that percentage is growing thanks to households and businesses nationwide that sign up to get their electricity from renewable resources.
Reducing your electricity footprint is easy. The first step is to reduce your electricity usage as much as you can. Then buy clean energy for the rest. You can do this either through a green power program offered by your local electricity provider or by buying renewable energy certificates from an online seller. Either way, the impact is the same. Your purchase increases demand for renewables, so more gets built.
Every megawatt-hour of renewable energy produced is assigned its own unique certificate, and whoever owns the certificate has clear title over the environmental benefits of the renewable generation it represents, including zero greenhouse gas emissions, and no pollutants like soot and mercury. Buying the certificates gives important additional revenues to the renewable energy projects that generated them, helping to build the market.
When you buy green power, you become part of the solution that will power our lives for generations to come. When you buy renewable energy, you really are making a difference.
To learn more about how clean energy is part of our sustainable future and search for options available to you, visit www.green-e.org.
(* Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, https://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.php?id=427&t=3