This educational article was provided by:
Steven Koep, BE-A (Beneficial Electrification Ambassador) & General Manager Beneficial Electrification League
By now, we’re all getting familiar with Clean Energy. We’ve all seen the wind generators and Community Solar installations while driving around our state and region. Both Solar Panels and Wind Generators provide Clean Energy in the form of ‘sustainable’ electricity. As more ‘clean’ and ‘sustainable’ electricity is added to our electric grid, ‘The Grid is Getting Greener!’ and the carbon intensity of electricity is going down – Down 29% since 2005.
As the grid gets greener, every electric end-use is getting greener as well, just by virtue of being connected to the grid. The electric water heater you install today will be greener and less carbon intensive five years from now, because electricity continues to get greener. This is only true of electricity, electric technologies and electric end-uses. As we use increasing amounts of clean, ‘sustainable’ electricity, America’s homes, farms and businesses are decarbonizing by reducing the carbon footprint and environmental impact of every electric technology that they use.
As we generate and use more and more clean, ‘sustainable’ electricity, both here, across the country and around the world, there is a growing nationwide movement toward converting/changing/enabling/upgrading more of our water heating and space-heating equipment and our transportation system to run on electricity, to Electrify!. This global trend is called Beneficial Electrification (BE).
By promoting and facilitating the installation of leading-edge, high-efficiency electric water heating and space heating technology and supporting the transition to electric cars and buses, your Wisconsin electric utilities are making it easier to use increasing amounts of clean, ‘sustainable’ electricity. Leading academic, governmental and environmental organizations are pointing to the declining cost curves for solar, wind and storage as indicators of the ‘path to sustainability’ that we need to pursue. Beneficial Electrification, facilitating the use of ‘sustainable’ electricity, is the 4th leg of the table that we need to stand on to reach our ‘sustainable’ future, because ‘The Future Is Electric!’.
With Beneficial Electrification, every person, every family, every farm and every business can participate in our transition to an abundant ‘clean energy’ future. By using clean, ‘sustainable’ electricity and high-efficiency electric technologies to meet our water-heating, space-heating, space-cooling and transportation needs, we are collectively reducing the environmental impact of our community and our state. By participating in the Beneficial Electrification programs provided by your electric utility, we are working together to build a more prosperous future for our children, our community, our state, our country and our planet (Mother Earth). We can all share in the mutual benefits of a thriving community, a forward-looking electric utility and a ‘sustainable’, Clean Energy future for ourselves and our children.
Why is this important? Why should I care?
This is important because, as a nation, we are producing more and more clean, ‘sustainable’ electricity from wind, solar and, yes, Community Solar. And costs are going down. In order to productively use all of the clean, ‘sustainable’ electricity that is being generated, we need a collaborative strategy, a ‘shared’ energy infrastructure (Greening the Grid for the Greater Good!) and an increasing number of efficient electric technologies that will enable and electrify our transition to a Clean Energy future!