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Renewables + Energy Purchasing

Renewables and Energy Purchasing

The District is rapidly scaling up its renewable energy portfolio. It is shifting towards a much aggressive pathway to cut carbon pollution in the city to reduce GHG emissions by half in 2032 and become carbon neutral by 2050. District government offsets 100 percent of its electricity supply by purchasing Renewable Energy Credits. In addition, District government directly sources one-third of its electricity supply from renewables via wind and solar power purchase agreements.

The renewable portfolio cuts down the government's carbon footprint by more than 110,000 tons each year and combined with the purchase of renewable energy credits. The District purchases enough green power to cover 100 percent of its municipal electricity use, equating to 470 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) through renewable energy certificates (RECs) annually. This reduction is equivalent to greening the annual power supply of 44,000 average American homes. As a result of the District Government's leadership, D.C. is a top-ranked community in the EPA's Green Power Community Challenge. As of April 2016, clean energy power purchases comprised 13.2% of all electricity sold in the District.
  

Solar Energy

In 2015, DGS-SE entered into two solar PPAs that now provide the District 11-12 megawatts of electricity through on-site solar photovoltaic (P.V.) systems installed on the roofs and parking lots of District-owned facilities. The solar PPAs make up the most significant municipal on-site solar project in the U.S. and supply an additional 3.5-4% of the District government's electricity needs. 

The PPAs are expected to save District taxpayers more than $30 million, catalyze $25 million in local spending, employ more than 190 people during construction, guard against energy price increases and volatility, and increase solar production in the District than 50%.In 2015, DGS-SE entered into two solar PPAs that now provide the District 11-12 megawatts of electricity through on-site solar photovoltaic (P.V.) systems installed on the roofs and parking lots of District-owned facilities. 

The solar PPAs make up the most significant municipal on-site solar project in the U.S. and supply an additional 3.5-4% of the District government's electricity needs. The PPAs are expected to save District taxpayers more than $30 million, catalyze $25 million in local spending, employ more than 190 people during construction, guard against energy price increases and volatility, and increase solar production in the District by than 50%.
    
Solar panels installed at H.D. Woodson High School (Ward 7) are part of one of the largest on-site solar installations in the U.S.

   
           Patterson Elementary School (Ward 8)                                      Metropolitan Police Training Academy (Ward 8)


                                                              Oxon Run Community Solar 2.6  MW solar farm (Ward 8) 

The 50th anniversary of Earth Day, DGS-SE in partnership with Grid Alternatives Mid-Atlantic inaugurated the District's largest community solar energy system located in a 15-acre brownfield along South Capitol Street, S.W. in Ward 8. The Oxon Run Community Solar project, a 2.65-megawatt solar farm, is designed with low environmental impact and safety in mind. It provides low-cost renewable energy to 750 income-qualifying Ward 8 residents who will be the beneficiaries of the installation.

To learn more about Oxon Run Community Solar and the District’s Solar for All Program, visit: https://doee.dc.gov/service/oxonrunsolar

Wind Energy:

The District Government signed its first wind power purchase agreement (PPA) in 2015, one of the largest PPAs entered into by a U.S. municipality sourced from Pennsylvania and provides 30-35% of DGS' electricity needs. Over 20 years, the PPA is projected to save District taxpayers $45 million, reduce GHG emissions by the amount equivalent to taking 18,000 cars off the road, and hedge against energy price increases and market volatility. Read more about this PPA here.

In recognition of DGS' groundbreaking wind PPA, the District received the prestigious C40 Cities Award for Global Leadership on Climate Change at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP21).

Related
Washington, DC – District of Columbia Wind Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)

Electricity Purchasing Strategy:

DGS-SE employs a Block & Index electricity purchasing strategy wherein blocks of electricity are purchased at a fixed rate in advance. The remainder is purchased on day-ahead and real-time electricity markets, for the DGS building portfolio's 800+ PEPCO electric accounts. This strategy enables the agency to integrate large-scale wind and solar supplies while saving 5-8% on generation and transmission costs. Consequently, this strategy stabilizes anticipated electricity costs, while mitigating long-term risk over the entire purchasing time horizon.