Appalachian Power Company has been forced to provid3 renewable energy electricity to its customers after the green energy bill becoming a law. The company will now start depending on wind and solar radiation to generate its electricity and be considered legal. The General Assembly accepted the Virginia Clean Economy Act to become a law forcing Appalachian and Dominion Energy to strategize on net-zero carbon emissions in the next three decades.
Appalachian has been dependent on coal and natural gas to meet the electricity demands of the West Virginia residents. The company intends to procure 210 megawatts of solar energy and 200 megawatts of wind energy by 2025 to remain relevant in the energy sector.
The procurement will be Appalachian’s first strategy to realize the State Corporation Commission’s clean energy regulations. The Appalachian chief of operations, Chris Beam, explained that they aim to ensure they meet the Virginia Clean Economy Act while making the electricity affordable to its customers.
Additionally, Appalachian is developing renewable energy storage resources to store energy from wind turbines and PV solar panels and provide energy to customers without interruptions. Appalachian anticipates obtaining 6000 megawatts of solar energy, onshore wind energy, and energy storage facilities to meet the customers’ needs in the next three decades. Currently, Appalachian receives two-thirds of its energy from coal-firing plants and 20% from natural gas.
The senior chief of the Virginia League of Conservation Voters, Lee Francis, stated that the company would be slacking in the transition to clean energy if the Clean Economy Act had not been initiated. He added that they are compelling the small companies entering the energy industry to take to renewables.
Appalachian replied that their facility in Virginia was still small, making it hard for them to conduct changes or mega switches. The company explained that Dominion, which has access to vast coal, gas, and nuclear plants, could transition to clean energy than them due to its flexibility.
Francis explained that ApCo was not displaying any potential in the transition to renewables until the law integrated them into taking this plan. Nevertheless, this new law applies to residents and companies in Virginia. The leaders of this state hope that other states can emulate them to accelerate renewables’ uptake by the entire country.
To sum up, Appalachian has declared that it would be closing its coal plants in West Virginia by milking them so that the investment can be channeled to renewable energy projects. The company’s deals in Indiana and Illinois will help it realize the stipulated objectives.