Virginia is blessed with a wealth of natural resources and scenic landscapes – from the Eastern shore
to the Blue Ridge. We are also fortunate to have a diverse economy based on agriculture, technology,
manufacturing, tourism and other sectors.
We are all vested in preserving these assets for future generations.
That’s why it is vitally important that we act now to move towards a clean energy future that provides
affordable electricity, creates “green-collar” jobs, protects the environment and public health, and reduces
global warming pollution.
Energy experts agree that by far the cleanest, cheapest and quickest way to produce more energy is through efficiency – everything from compact fluorescent light bulbs to “smart grid” transmission
lines. The Governor’s Commission on Climate Change recommends that Virginia meet 19% of energy
demand by 2025 through efficiency – a goal supported by independent analysis. The panel also calls for
increasing renewable energy from sources like wind and solar, and increasing conservation.
But Old Dominion Electric Cooperative are asking Virginians to spend $6 billion for an old-style, coal-fired power plant in Surry county. The facility would pollute our air and water, increase the devastating practice of mountaintop removal coal mining, lead to higher electric bills for customers, and release millions of tons of global warming pollution every year – for the next 50 or 60 years.
The Wise Energy for Virginia Coalition is fighting to stop Old Dominion Electric Cooperative’s proposed power plant in Surry County. In the meantime, tens of thousands of your fellow Virginians have signed up to support clean energy.
Now it’s your turn.
We’re calling on all citizens of the Commonwealth – especially our leaders – to support investments in
energy efficiency and responsible renewable energy as our first and best sources.
Virginia utilities rank 32nd in the country in the percentage of revenues they spend on efficiency – a total of just $84,000 across the state in 2006.1 In comparison, utilities in Alabama and Mississippi spent more than $400,000, and North Carolina energy providers spent $3.8 million. In September 2008, the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE), an independent research firm, released a report examining Virginia’s efficiency opportunities. ACEEE found that:
- Aggressively pursuing all cost-effective efficiency measures available today would supply 31% of our energy needs in 2025.
- A less aggressive approach would still supply 19% of our energy needs by 2025. This would save $15 billion on our electric bills – all without building a single new power plant.
Efficiency is by far the cheapest way to generate additional electricity for Virginia’s growing economy – roughly 3 cents per kilowatt-hour, compared to more than 10 cents per kWh for coal-fired power.
Energy efficiency programs typically cost 2 to 5 times less than building new coal plants.
Getting smarter about the way we use energy will save families money and create jobs right here
Energy efficiency includes “Energy Star” appliances, better insulation and high-efficiency heating and
cooling systems for schools, factories, homes and offices. It means enjoying the same high quality of
life we’ve come to expect while using less electricity.
Our tactics can change from year to year so making sure that you are signed up to receive regular updates is the best way to get involved with the effort to make Virginia a more energy efficient state.