NREL Offsets All Its Energy Use with Renewable Energy Credits

July 12, 2006

DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is not only a leading developer of renewable energy, but also a leading user of the technology. NREL's on-site power production from wind turbines and solar power systems contributes 138,000 kilowatt-hours to the laboratory's power needs, but the laboratory has gone far beyond that. NREL announced in late June that it has purchased enough renewable energy credits to offset not only the total energy use of its buildings, but also all the energy used by NREL vehicles, employee commuting, air travel, and other energy consumed in the operation of the laboratory. By doing so, NREL exceeded its five-year goal as part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Climate Leaders Partnership, having cut overall greenhouse gas emissions more than 10 percent since 2000.

NREL was the first federal pilot partner in the Climate Leaders Partnership. It is one of only seven original members to establish initial target reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and one of only five to meet its goals in 2005. Offsetting all its energy use is noteworthy for an institution of NREL's size and scope. NREL encompasses 618 acres on several sites, with 665,000 square feet of laboratory and office space that house more than 1,100 researchers and support staff. See the NREL press release and the Climate Leaders Partnership Web site.