Thursday, August 09, 2007

the mystery of greenpower

What exactly is GreenPower?
Green power is the generic name given to electricity generated from clean, renewable energy sources. Green power sources can include solar, wind power, new hydro on existing dams, biomass, wave energy and landfill gas. GreenPower is also the name used for marketing renewable energy to us by electricity suppliers.

The difference between green power and the power generated by coal fired power stations is that green power does not generate Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG). Last week 57% of Victorias GHG’s emissions were generated from our coal fired power stations. The more GreenPower you buy, the more you reduce the greenhouse footprint and the bigger your contribution to combating global warming.

How do you know that the Green Power offered to you by your electricity supplier is really from new renewable energy sources?
GreenPower means the renewable energy product being sold to you is endorsed by a collection of state governments that manage the GreenPower program. For a renewable energy product to gain endorsement from the GreenPower program it must be generated from:
~Eligible renewable energy sources that meet strict environmental standards
~A new renewable energy facility that was built since January 1997 (Other renewable energy exists, but it may not be accredited because it was built before 1997, and was already contributing energy to the electricity grid)

Accreditation ensures that energy companies are producing renewable energy of the same standard, accreditation also means that GreenPower retailers’ sales and purchases are audited on an annual basis to ensure you get what you pay for. By buying GreenPower you can directly influence the level of investment in renewable energy.

Be careful!
Many retailers sell “Green Power” but it is not accredited and is not audited under the GreenPower program. Generally non-accredited products source their renewable energy from old sources that were established decades ago, such as large hydro-electric projects. Purchasing products from old renewable energy sources does not contribute directly to new investments in renewable energy and does not help to reduce our reliance on coal fired power stations.

Want to know more?
For everything you ever needed to know about GreenPower visit:

It’s confusing, I know, but for a really easy way to check if your electricity supplier has a good green power product visit

Harnessing energy from the sun - no GHGs generated!


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