Joule Expands Clean Energy Offerings to Include Solar Services and Project Origination for Municipal Facilities, Universities, Schools, and Hospitals
KATONAH, N.Y., March 8, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- As electricity rates skyrocketed through the first two months of 2022, Joule estimates that its electricity supply customers saved $7 million from July 2021 through February 2022, with $3.4 million in savings accruing in February arising from its participants in the Central Hudson utility zone due to the utility's expected 46% rate hike for electricity. In Rockland Country, Joule's program participants saved more than $2 million through January 2022 since the program's November 2021 launch. Prior to this year, residents and businesses taking advantage of their municipal clean energy program by purchasing electricity supply or subscribing to a solar farm through Joule Assets, via Joule Community Power, have collectively saved more than $2.3 million since the first program launched in July 2019 through year-end 2021.
Beyond this, the program is also delivering environmental benefits. Participants in Joule's programs collectively have helped us avoid more than 650,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions since July 2019, the equivalent of the amount of carbon sequestered by 825,000 acres of forest in one year.
In 2021, Joule launched community choice aggregation programs ("CCA" or "community choice") in thirteen municipalities, including Rochester, NY, to more than 80,000 utility account holders and program renewals under a new supply contract in thirteen Hudson Valley communities. During the year, the Company was appointed program administrator for eighteen additional communities, and as a result, will be able to offer clean energy at fixed competitive rates to 800,000 New Yorkers in 44 municipalities across the State. All but one of the municipalities with electricity supply contracts negotiated through Joule have selected 100% renewable energy as default energy supply for their communities. Joule serves as the program administrator for the CCA programs and partners with local organizers to provide support, education, and outreach in the communities.
During 2021, Joule launched the country's first community choice (opt-out) solar program in the villages of Brockport and Lima, NY, making the benefits of solar—including guaranteed electricity bill savings—available to all, regardless of income or credit worthiness and without the hassle of having to enroll or receiving a second bill for solar. Historically offered on an opt-in basis, community solar programs allow utility customers to support solar energy generation and save on annual electricity costs without installing solar panels. By year-end 2021, Joule had enrolled more than 3,500 customers in opt-in community solar programs, enabling subscribers who actively enroll and qualify to lower their electricity costs by up to 10%. As part of the community solar offerings, Joule gives back to communities by contributing local sustainability projects through our Impact Program.
Joule CEO Jessica Stromback stated, "We are proud to be transforming the way NY consumes energy. 2021 saw us breaking new ground with launches of the State's largest community choice aggregation program in Rochester and the first opt-out community solar program in the U.S. We are committed to developing a clean energy future for all by scaling local climate action initiatives and, indeed, 95% of our clients have chosen to upgrade to clean energy. This choice has been beneficial in helping make progress toward achieving NY's aggressive clean energy goals, but it also has saved residents and businesses an estimated $7 million over the last 8 months."
Community choice programs empower participating communities to leverage the collective buying power of residents and small businesses at large enough scale to negotiate better terms. CCA also provides increased consumer protection while providing residents energy options and participation flexibility. While eligible residents are automatically enrolled in community choice programs, anyone can opt out at any time.
Customer Acquisition for Remote Crediting Provides Institutions with Guaranteed Savings
In addition to helping municipalities reach their sustainability goals, Joule now offers larger institutions a way to decrease their electricity costs, help reduce NY State carbon emissions, support local renewable energy generation, and participate in their surrounding community's clean energy movement.
Gregg Lerman, Senior Vice President at Joule Assets said of the new offering, "Through partnerships with solar project developers, we are now able to offer municipalities, universities, schools, and hospitals subscriptions to local solar farms, enabling them to access the same solar benefits residents and small businesses receive by subscribing to a local solar farm—guaranteed savings without the hassle of a receiving a solar bill, incurring costs, or installing panels. Previously, these institutions could not enjoy similar benefits through our municipally-endorsed community solar programs, even if located within the borders of a participating municipality."
Community Solar Project Origination and Brownfield Development
Joule municipal partner Town of Southampton will be the first municipal community solar project to be fully-subscribed through an opt-out CCA program. The Town has chosen solar developer Kearsarge Energy Limited Partnership to build the solar project on a municipally-owned brownfield site. The project will allow Southampton to automatically distribute all solar credits generated to low- to moderate-income residents, delivering guaranteed electricity bill savings to those who stand to benefit most.
"Project origination through CCA keeps the benefits local," said Glenn Weinberg, Vice President of Sales and Market Development at Joule. "For developers, these community-driven programs allow for projects to be fully-subscribed immediately through one municipally held contract."
Joule Founder and Chief Strategy Officer Mike Gordon said, "These expanded offerings are not in isolation. Our communities are leaders in smart sustainable solutions. They have led in the State, and they have led in the nation. Guaranteed savings, fully renewable power, fixed prices to protect residents' pocketbooks against global instability, state and federal grants for microgrids and for energy storage, programs that support impoverished communities to gain agency. These communities are using available tools to solve problems in a manner that helps their residents thrive. This is a good beginning, but it is just the beginning.
2021 REVIEW – OPERATING PROGRAMS
Hudson Valley Community Power
City of Beacon
Finger Lakes Community Choice
Village of Brockport
Gateway Community Power
City of Canandaigua
Monroe Community Power
Town of Brighton
Rockland Community Power
Town of Clarkstown
Rochester Community Power
City of Rochester
2022 EXPECTED LAUNCHES TO 56,000+ HOUSEHOLDS IN:
Town of Black Brook
Village of Canton
Town of Gardiner
City of Geneva
Town of Henrietta
Village of Highland Falls
Town of Highlands
Village of Honeoye Falls
Village of Nelsonville
Town of Rhinebeck
Town of Roseboom
Village of Saugerties
Town of Southampton
Village of Suffern
Town of Waddington
Village of West Haverstraw
About Joule Community Power
Joule Community Power (Joule) is committed to developing a clean energy future for all. Through our comprehensive portfolio of community choice aggregation and sustainability services, Joule ensures the at-scale uptake and deployment of new clean energy resources, enabling municipalities to deliver on their sustainability objectives. Joule's programs empower municipalities to make energy decisions for their own communities, thereby enabling local decision-making and empowerment. In doing so, Joule is shifting New York State's energy dependency from a utility-controlled, fossil fuel model to a municipally-controlled clean, renewable energy model for thousands of households at a time. As a first mover, in 2021, Joule launched the first and only opt-out community solar program in the U.S., bringing the benefits of solar—including guaranteed electricity bill savings—to entire communities. As of December 31, 2021, Joule represented 800,000 New Yorkers in 44 municipalities. Additionally, Joule enables consumers and institutions to take action and benefit from New York State's ongoing investment in sustainability initiatives. To learn more, visit joulecommunitypower.com.
About Joule Assets
Joule Assets is committed to shifting the energy paradigm from a model based on fossil fuels and excess demand to clean and efficient generation for all. Joule Assets actively empowers communities, businesses, investors, and individuals to capitalize on sustainable energy assets in the United States and Europe by expanding small customer market access, encouraging community-scale clean energy programs and facilitating energy efficiency markets. Based on years of regulatory expertise, market intelligence, and performance-based financing knowledge, Joule negotiates cheaper, cleaner energy supply on behalf of communities in New York State. In Europe, Joule supports the access to financing for efficiency and renewables projects, catalyzing the marketplace for project developers and investors. Each business unit–Joule Community Power and Joule Europe–supports Joule's overarching mission to shift the energy paradigm towards clean and efficient energy for all. To learn more, visit jouleassets.com.
Victor-Pierre Melendez, MPA
Vice President, Marketing
Director, Municipal Sales & Outreach
VP, Sales & Market Development
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SOURCE Joule Community Power