New Report Shows Clean Energy Can Lower Natural Gas Prices

Richmond, VA - A coalition of Virginia renewable energy stakeholders released a report today that outlines how adopting mandatory renewable energy legislation will save Virginians' $30 million dollars in energy costs over the next ten years.

The report is part of a campaign the Chesapeake Climate Action Network (CCAN) is waging to get Virginia to adopt legislation mandating 15 to 20 percent of the state's electricity come from renewable sources by 2015.

"Virginians are going to feel the pinch of rising energy prices this winter so it's good to know that switching to some renewable energy will cut energy costs and save consumers money," said Diana Dascalu, CCAN Virginia Campaign Strategist. "Making the switch to renewable energy statewide will also bring added benefits to Virginia such as local jobs, a more secure energy supply, and less greenhouse gas pollution."

The study also demonstrates that the prices of many renewables, including wind power, are actually less per month than conventional energy sources such as natural gas. For example, participants in a voluntary wind purchase in Colorado used to pay $6 more than customers using conventional power sources (ie. coal, natural gas, etc), but as of November 1st, 2005, they are paying $10 less a month than all other customers relying on conventional sources of energy to provide energy to their homes.

"Virginia's current mix of energy technologies is anything but diverse, relying mostly on fossil fuels and nuclear power," said Dr. Pat Delaquil, lead expert in developing the renewable energy study. "Virginia's energy portfolio is extremely vulnerable to fuel prices increases, which can end up costing Virginians a lot of money in home energy costs in the near future. By mandating a certain percentage of Virginia power to come from renewable resources, the state will ensure that prices will remain stable and will not fluctuate violently in the future."

Investing in renewable energy will also stimulate jobs and economic growth locally, especially in the manufacturing sector where over 60,000 jobs have been lost in Virginia in the past 10 years. Home grown Virginia renewable energy will also decrease air pollution in the state while ensuring that the commonwealth is provided with safe, viable, and local energy sources in the future.