Rocklin Becomes the First ClimateSmart™ City By Joining PG&E's ClimateSmart™ Program, City Will Neutralize Up to 1,686,711 Lbs of Carbon Dioxide per Year
Release Date: November 15, 2007
Contact: PG&E External Communications (415) 973-5930
local elementary school students, Pacific Gas and Electric Company today announced that the City of Rocklin, located in Placer County, is California's first municipality to officially enroll in the voluntary ClimateSmart™ program. By joining, the City of Rocklin will offset more than 1.6 million pounds of carbon dioxide every year or more than 4,600 pounds every day. The ClimateSmart program enables customers to voluntarily neutralize greenhouse gas emissions associated with their energy use.
"By signing up for ClimateSmart, the City of Rocklin is setting a great example for other communities and demonstrating to its residents that it's committed to protecting the environment," said Greg Pruett, senior vice president of corporate relations of PG&E Corporation. "We look forward to working with Rocklin and other local governments in northern and central California to combat climate change with our portfolio of smart energy solutions."
The City of Rocklin signed up all of its 218 electric and natural gas metered accounts. These accounts include all city buildings, including the fire and police departments, the city's community center and all city parks and sports fields. Each city building will have on display a certificate from PG&E recognizing that building as carbon neutral.
"Partnering with PG&E in the ClimateSmart program is an outstanding addition to Rocklin's ongoing effort to protect and preserve the city's natural resources," Rocklin Mayor Kathy Lund said. "We are proud to work with PG&E, residents and local businesses on this and other important environmental protection initiatives."
PG&E launched the ClimateSmart program in June 2007 and already more than 13,000 customers have signed up. ClimateSmart is a voluntary program which enables PG&E's residential and business customers to fund environmental projects aimed at removing greenhouse gases from the air or avoiding the emissions in the first place. Customers who enroll will pay a separate amount on their monthly utility bills to remove or avoid the equivalent carbon dioxide (CO2) associated with their energy use thus making them "climate neutral."
PG&E has enrolled as the first participant in ClimateSmart by committing more than $1.5 million of shareholder funding over the next three years to make the energy use in the company's offices, service centers, maintenance facilities and other company buildings completely climate neutral. When a customer enrolls in ClimateSmart, PG&E will calculate the amount of greenhouse gas emissions produced by the customer's electricity and gas usage. For the average residential customer, PG&E estimates the cost will be less than $5 per month. For the City of Rocklin, approximately $8,100 per year will be spent on neutralizing the carbon emissions produced by all city facilities.
Becoming the first city to join the ClimateSmart program aligns with the City of Rocklin's vision of being an environmental leader with a focus on conservation and resource management. This February, the city installed a 143 kilowatt solar system at its new state-of-the-art police station, which generates 40 percent of the electricity required to operate the facility. The city's solar commitment resulted in a $429,000 solar rebate from PG&E. Additionally, in September; the city was recognized by Placer County for Rocklin's success in preserving open space. Between 1952 and 2003, as the city was developing, tree canopy coverage increased by 63 percent, from 11 percent to 18 percent overall.
The City of Rocklin has also set aside a large portion (approximately 19 percent) of city land area as open space and park land, and adopted an oak tree protection ordinance in 1997. The city has also partnered with the Placer County Materials Recovery Facility (MRF), which supports recycling of residential household and business waste. Residents are able to throw away cans, bottles, paper, cardboard, wood and other materials into one common trash can, which is later separated at the MRF and diverted from the landfill and recycled.
PG&E proudly provides its customers with among the cleanest energy in the nation. On average, more than 50 percent of the energy delivered to its electric customers is carbon free and the company is well on its way to reaching 20 percent renewables under contract or delivered by 2010. Through its leading energy efficiency and demand response programs, the company has helped prevent more than 125 million tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere, while saving its customers nearly $20 billion.
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For more information about Pacific Gas and Electric Company's ClimateSmart program, please visit our website at www.pge.com/climatesmart.