201507

31
New Yorker photo by Eric Helgas

Power to the People

Our latest editorial obsession is a recent New Yorker article Power to the People: Why the rise of green energy makes utility companies nervous.

Written by Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org, the article astutely describes the state of green energy, and the challenge of getting utility companies to adapt and support the switch to renewable energy sources.

The article profiles various Vermont-based, working-class families who have given their homes energy makeovers, with both fiscally lucrative and environmentally beneficial outcomes. As McKibben describes it, “the numbers reveal a sudden new truth—that innovative, energy-saving and energy-producing technology is now cheap enough for everyday use.”

McKibben profiles Green Mountain Power in Vermont, a standout utility in an otherwise archaic and, as he describes it, sleepy business sector. And in contrast, other less solar-supportive utility companies across the United States, and the rationale for their fear of disruptive technologies.

At the core of his argument is this: “The energy revolution, instead of happening piecemeal, over decades, could take place fast enough to actually help an overheating planet. But all of this would require the utilities—the interface between people and power—to play a crucial role, or, at least, to get out of the way.”

Our founder, Simone, recently transitioned her Gramercy Park flat to 100% renewable energy, with Ethical Electric. It’s a simple process, with big environmental rewards. Join the movement.

Read the full article here.