Intel Remains Top Green Power Partner
Intel Corporation (Nasdaq: INTC) kept its top ranking in the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Green Power Partners program for 2009. The computer-chip maker remains the partnership’s largest single purchaser of green power, increasing its commitment over the previous year to more than 1.4 billion kWh.
EPA said participation in the program increased by 300 new partners in 2009. Overall, the 1,200 partners are buying nearly 18 billion kWh of green power annually, equivalent to the annual carbon dioxide emissions from electricity use of more than 1.6 million average American homes.
Kohl’s Department Stores (NYSE: KSS) increased its green power purchase by more than 1 billion kWh in 2009, becoming the second-largest purchaser within the partnership. PepsiCo (NYSE:PEP), Whole Foods Market (Nasdaq: WFMI), the City of Houston, Dell Inc (Nasdaq: DELL), The Pepsi Bottling Group, Inc. (NYSE: PBG), Cisco Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) round out the top 10 purchasers.
All together, these 10 leaders are buying more than 7.3 billion kWh of green power annually, equivalent to the carbon dioxide emissions from the electricity use of more than 680,000 average American homes.
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Electricity prices should fully link the consumer price to peak-period generation costs, environmental costs and the high cost of new generation, according to an analysis released today by the C.D. Howe Institute. In "The Price Isn't Right: The Need for Reform in Consumer Electricity Pricing," author Donald N. Dewees says such pricing reform is required to reduce both financial and electrical stress on the system and help prepare Ontario--and other Canadian provinces--for the rising costs of new generation.
According to Dewees, a University of Toronto Professor of Economics and Law, most provinces have relied on flat rates and price-freezes for electricity, which may be politically expedient in the near term but have led to over-consumption, pollution, fiscal stress and excess pressures on the generation system.
Dewees argues that Ontario should implement a pricing scheme that reduces peak-load demand by consumers, reduces strain on the generation system, and covers the cost of operation. Such a pricing plan would equate the hourly cost of electricity generation, including the environmental cost, with what consumers pay. Ontario is moving in this direction with time-of-use pricing, but should go further by fully linking the cost of operation in periods of high strain on the generation system with the price paid by consumers, he concludes.
One of the major hurdles to implementing time-of-use pricing, he points out, is measuring individual customer use in multi-unit residential buildings. This can be addressed, however, with regulations that guide condo owners and rental landlords toward decisions that reap the economic benefits, when justified, of installing smart meters.
The study is available as a pdf at the link below.