An REC is created each time one megawatt-hour of renewable energy is generated and made available for consumption. The RECs are verified and tracked by the Midwest Renewable Energy Tracking System (M-RETS) as proof of the renewable generation. Utilities use RECs to comply with state environmental standards and goals and can offer RECs to customers to offset any fossil fuels in their power supply mix. The use of RECs supports investments in additional carbon-free energy production.
Members of wholesale power supplier Missouri River Energy Services (MRES), including Watertown Municipal Utilities, get most of their electricity from clean, renewable hydropower from dams on the Missouri River. The purchase of RECs enabled Terex Utilities to reach 100% renewable energy consumption in Watertown.
“Watertown Municipal Utilities has a great environmental story to tell because it provides customers with 79% carbon-free energy (three-year average). MRES is happy to offer RECs as a way for Watertown customers to offset the portion of their electricity that comes from fossil fuels, making the electric usage, in effect, net-zero carbon,” said Tim Blodgett, MRES Vice President of Member Services and Communications.
“Our customers — municipalities, rural co-ops, and investor-owned utilities — have been on a journey to reach net-zero carbon emissions goals in the coming years," Moore said. "Purchasing RECs is one way we stand in support of their efforts locally."