How do we balance reliability, affordability and sustainability?

At Friday’s 7th Annual Rhode Island Energy and Environmental Leadership conference organized by our United States Senator from Rhode Island, Sheldon Whitehouse, that was how the question of transitioning towards a clean and climate-friendly energy future was framed.

The answer?

Energy efficiency + regional clean energy abundance.

The product of that equation is not cost per kilowatt at the meter. It is average monthly bill at the pocketbook.

What’s more important to you:

  • how much you pay per unit?
  • how much money you have left, after you pay your bill?

This is a powerful new way of framing the conversation about transitioning to the new energy economy we need to avoid confrontation with catastrophic climate change. Sen Whitehouse is rightfully proud that while Rhode Island has among the highest costs for our electricity on a per kilowatt basis, we also have among the lowest average monthly bills for electricity hitting our pocketbooks. This is because of leadership by the Senator and others in driving towards increasing energy efficiency.

Rhode Island is also leading in making optimum use of our regionally abundant clean energy resources. In Rhode Island, the Ocean State, regional abundance means ocean abundance.  The Senator is rightfully proud, as we all are, that Rhode Island is first in the Nation to install wind energy power plants offshore, to capture the abundance of energy in our offshore winds.

Deepwater Wind is currently commissioning its new 5 tower array of 6 Mw wind power generators bringing the very first 30 Mw of offshore wind energy to the United States from the waters between Pt Judith and Block Island beginning later this year.

Once we have ocean wind, what’s next?

Why not ocean wave energy, from the DUO, from Sea Potential?