Amidst the excitement and controversy of the California launch of the nation’s first ever economy-wide carbon pollution auction, Environment California Research & Policy Center released a new report detailing how businesses and organizations of all different types and sizes are embracing clean energy solutions as a way to reap near-term economic returns, all while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
“Solving global warming and strengthening our economy are two sides of the same coin,” said Bernadette Del Chiaro, Clean Energy and Global Warming Program Director at Environment California Research & Policy Center and co-author of the new report. “The experience of California companies flies in the face of claims that California’s leadership on solving global warming is bad for business.”
According to a new report by Environment California Research & Policy Center, Greening the Bottom Line 2012: California Companies Save Money by Reducing Global Warming Pollution, even businesses covered by the new cap and trade program, such as Anheuser-Busch’s brewery in Fairfield, have realized significant cost savings by investing in clean, renewable energy. As the report details, the brewery recently added a 1.5 MW wind turbine to cut 6 million pounds of global warming pollution each year and save $1.6 million over 20 years. They also have a 1.2 MW solar photovoltaic system and a bio-energy recovery system that converts brewery waste into electricity.
“On the day that California launched its first-ever carbon auction, examples of local businesses and institutions saving money while reducing global warming pollution is especially timely,” said Del Chiaro.
The report highlights eight businesses and other institutions that have made groundbreaking progress in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and other sustainable practices that dramatically reduce their contributions to global warming while also helping their bottom lines. Other institutions highlighted in the report include:
- Marine Corps Air Station Miramar installed a landfill gas plant, solar arrays, and various efficiency projects that reduce annual energy bills by over $820,000 and offset the equivalent of 250 million pounds of carbon dioxide each year.
- Gills Onions in Oxnard has an on-site energy system that converts onion waste to electricity. Along with some other clean energy initiatives, Gills is saving $800,000 and reducing 4 million pounds carbon dioxide per year.
- Golden Valley Unified School District equipped its Madera campuses with solar panels that supply 80% of the district’s electricity needs, saving $250,000 by 2017.
- San Mateo Community College, Sonoma County YMCA and the Marine Corps Camp Pendleton are also profiled in the report.
“What California is really doing with the auction is shifting money away from dirty fuels and toward clean, renewable sources of energy,” said Del Chiaro. “