http://www.cleanenergy.org/2014/05/20/conservation-groups-commend-georgia-power-public-service-commission-for-georgias-first-major-wind-power-approval/

SACE | Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

Conservation Groups Commend Georgia Power, Public Service Commission for Georgia’s First Major Wind Power Approval

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Contacts: Kurt Ebersbach, Southern Environmental Law Center, 404-521-9900; Simon Mahan, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, 337-303-3723

Atlanta, GA—Conservation groups applauded the Georgia Public Service Commission’s approval today of Georgia Power Company’s first-ever wind energy deals. The Commission voted to allow Georgia Power to enter into two long-term contracts for the purchase of 250 megawatts of power from wind farms in Oklahoma, enough to power over 50,000 homes.

The Southern Environmental Law Center intervened on behalf of Southern Alliance for Clean Energy in support of the proposed wind purchase contracts. The Commission voted to adopt a stipulation reached between the utility, Public Service Commission advocacy staff, and conservation groups, after finding that the wind energy provided under the agreement would bring immediate savings to Georgia Power customers because it is cheaper than other energy alternatives.

“Wind energy will reduce ratepayers’ costs and we applaud the Georgia Public Service Commission, EDP Renewables and Georgia Power for bringing wind power to our state,” said Simon Mahan, Renewable Energy Manager for Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. “Georgia Power’s commitment to purchasing clean, low cost wind energy is proof positive that the south is the next frontier for the wind industry.”

Today’s approval marks the first time the utility has added wind resources to its energy supply mix, bringing diversity to Georgia Power’s energy generation portfolio. In addition to calling for approval of the two contracts, the stipulation requires Georgia Power to study opportunities for adding additional wind resources to its system and to publicly release its findings in March 2015.

“First with solar, and now with wind, the Commission and Georgia Power are paving the way for Georgians to realize the immediate benefits of clean energy solutions,” said Kurt Ebersbach, senior attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center. “Today’s decision shows that fuel-free energy resources like solar and wind power are reliable and cost-effective–not in some distant future, but now. We are confident that this is the beginning of many opportunities for customers to reap significant cost-savings from clean wind energy.”

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Southern Environmental Law Center:

The Southern Environmental Law Center is a regional nonprofit using the power of the law to protect the health and environment of the Southeast (Virginia, Tennessee, North and South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama). Founded in 1986, SELC’s team of nearly 60 legal and policy experts represent more than 100 partner groups on issues of climate change and energy, air and water quality, forests, the coast and wetlands, transportation, and land use. www.SouthernEnvironment.org

About Southern Alliance for Clean Energy:

Founded in 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization that promotes responsible energy choices that create global warming solutions and ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at www.cleanenergy.org