Dan Kalafatas, CEO of 3 Degrees, discusses the importance of partnering with City CarShare, in San Francisco, to offer Renewable Energy Credits for the company’s electric vehicles.
3Degrees is a leading renewable energy services provider. We work with utilities and corporate institutional clients. On the utilities side, we help them comply with state renewable portfolio standards by providing RECs to them. And also run, on a managed outsource basis, the voluntary programs that they in turn offer to their rate payers enabling them to choose renewable energy to a greater degree than the utilities would have gone out and procured for them on their own.For corporations and institutions, we allow them to do just that same thing. We provide RECs and carbon offset to them along with additional services that allow them to define and implement sustainability strategies for their own benefit.
Through our utility programs, we reach out to 7.7 million households around the country. For a decade now, we’ve been constantly experimenting with the best ways of increasing awareness and interest for renewable energy and inducing people to support the transition to a low carbon economy. We do that through a host of different means, information provided through a variety of different channels but one of the most important things that we found is a one-on-one conversation between human beings, talking about the evolution of renewable energy in the United States is absolutely critical.
We’ve been amazed with the continual and growing interest among individuals and businesses to voluntarily commit to support renewable energy and low carbon technologies in the United States and the markets have continued to grow despite the pressures that all Americans are facing today. We are real solid in 2011. As I’ve mentioned, we scaled significantly the utility partnership work that we do. We are entering the State of Maine in 2012, State of Connecticut in 2012, we’ve expanded what we’re doing in the Pacific Northwest, we’ve partnered up with an increasing pool of corporations and other kinds of institutions that are interested in committing themselves to renewable energy. Brands like Kettle Foods and Starbucks, Whole Foods and etc. and that list keeps growing and growing overtime.
We’re also doing our part for unemployment in the United States. We’ll be opening offices regionally in the Northeast and continue to scale our organization. We’re a 50-person organization headquartered here in San Francisco operating now in 6 states around the United States. As you can see, I’m standing in front of a Nissan Leaf here 100% EV vehicle. EVs have come now. At a whole slew of price points and performance levels. We’ve teamed up with City CarShare, which has been a leading car sharing organization here in San Francisco for a decade, to sponsor neutralizing the electricity that their fleet of EVs will be drawing over the entire year 2012 from the regional power grid with wind power generated within the Western United States. Going EV is very good for the environment as it is, but what we’re enabling City CarShare members, that drive these cars, to go the extra mile to fully zero-out the carbon emissions, however low they were anyway, by way of driving EVs. We see this as an early market here for renewable energy, but one with great potential.
Overall, looking ahead, citing EC Berkley’s study, in 2030 we expect something along the lines of 200 million megawatt hours of energy to be required to power the EV fleet that will exist at that time. We think there’s a great opportunity for all of that or most of that to be powered with renewable energy.
It’s really fun to start here in our very own San Francisco, with a partner, where we have employees literally participating in City CarShare, to do an early example of how this system can work and how it will scale. As such, it’s a nice growth market that we’re focused on for the future. I believe in the power of market forces to solve just about all social problems. I believe that binding together with people across the country and around the world that we can mitigate the impact of climate change and that gets me out of bed in the morning and I find it very meaningful to be part of creating jobs for people that are interested in doing the same thing.