Moab - A Leader in Sustainable Energy
Moab began its clean energy leadership in 2003 when they began purcasing wind power for 50% of the City Office building electricity demand. Mayor Dave Sakrison wanted to do more. In April 2006, Mayor Sakrison challenged 5% of the Moab area's electricity customers to puchase pollution-free wind energy through Utah Power's Blue Sky voluntary wind program to become the region's first Blue Sky Community. With the help of Utah Clean Energy, the City (led by Mayor Sakrison) and Utah Power, Moab met the goal in a little over a month!
"Mayor Sakrison's leadership and Moab's community commitment is an inspiring example of how a community can band together to create positive change," said Sarah Wright of Utah Clean Energy, a non-profit organization working to speed the transition to a cleaner, safer, more sustainable energy future through increased use of energy efficiency and renewables.
After meeting their initial clean energy goal, the Moab community decided to take the challenge a step further. In the summer of 2004, a dedicated group of local businesses, individuals and Moab and Castle Valley mayors worked with the EPA to creat a Greeen Power Community Partner designation for communities that buy a meaningful percentage of their electricity from renewable energy. Within a couple of months, the community reached and surpassed their target of 3% of their aggregated electricity purchased through Utah Power's Blue Sky wind program and became the Nation's First EPA Green Power Community.
Today, more than 14 percent of residents and businesses purchase pollution-free wind power and nearly 4% of the area's electricity demand is met with wind power. The community's purchase is equivalent to the output of a 1 MW wind turbine and prevents 5.5 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions each year. Moab is home to Utah's first 100% wind powered newspaper, The Times Indpendent and 100% wind powered public radio KZMU (90.1 FM) and over 100 other businesses purchasing wind power.
"This is only the beginning; our next phase is energy efficency in Moab and working with the Utah Energy Policy Task Force to make sure that renewable energy sources are a part of the Utah State's energy policy." explained Mayor Dave Sakrison. Other communities in Utah are already following Moab's example. Park City, Salt Lake City and Sundance are engaged in Community Clean Energy Challenges, currently Moab leads them all.
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