U.S. Government’s sustainable procurement will drive new clean energy projects, create jobs, and make communities healthier
WASHINGTON –In a historic first, the Biden-Harris Administration announced a whole-of-government commitment to power federal facilities in Arkansas with locally supplied 100 percent carbon pollution-free electricity (CFE) under a first of its kind 24/7 CFE contract with utility Entergy Arkansas. The federal clean energy commitment will drive development of new clean energy projects in Arkansas, creating good jobs, boosting local economies, and making air healthier for Arkansas communities.
“President Biden set a high bar for federal sustainability. The federal government is the nation’s largest energy consumer, and this milestone shows how agencies are leading by example to meet our climate goals, create good jobs, and build healthier communities,” said Brenda Mallory, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality.
The federal agencies that have committed to use the Entergy Arkansas new 24/7 carbon-free electricity green tariff product are: the Departments of Defense, Health and Human Services, the Interior, Justice, Transportation, and Veterans Affairs, as well as the General Services Administration and the National Archives and Records Administration. Collectively, these agencies’ total electricity load in the Entergy Arkansas territory is 278 gigawatt-hours, which is equivalent to powering 25,000 American homes for a year.
“The federal government’s partnership with utilities to spur demand for carbon pollution-free electricity is off to a great start with Entergy Arkansas,” said Robin Carnahan, Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration. “We’re already replicating this model through additional agreements across the country, so that the federal government can lead the way in driving our grid as a whole toward local, clean energy sources.”
Developed at the request of the U.S. General Services Administration via a 2022 Memorandum of Understanding between the agency and Entergy Arkansas, the new utility green tariff product will allow large energy customers like the federal government to support the development of new renewable generation in Arkansas while also recognizing the contribution of the utility’s existing carbon pollution-free nuclear and hydroelectric generation. In addition, the contract will report on an hourly basis the degree to which electric consumption from federal facilities is matched to the utility’s CFE generation in order to demonstrate upwards of a 90% hourly matched CFE score for the U.S. government.
Federal Chief Sustainability Officer Andrew Mayock said, “This opportunity means that the federal government’s real-time demand for electricity in Arkansas will be met with clean energy in almost every hour of every day, and delivered within the same regional grid where the electricity is consumed. This serves as a model for our efforts to transition to carbon pollution-free electricity at federal facilities across the country.”
President Biden charged the federal government to lead by example and leverage its scale and procurement power to tackle the climate crisis. This federal purchase will advance the Biden-Harris Administration’s ambitious goal of sourcing 100% CFE to power federal facilities by 2030, at least half of which will be locally supplied clean energy to meet 24/7 demand.
Assistant Secretary of Defense for Energy, Installations, and Environment and Chief Sustainability Officer, Brendan Owens said, “The ongoing clean energy transition advances U.S. national security interests and creates economic opportunity for U.S. domestic technology. Not only does clean energy help to improve the resilience of U.S. military installations and local grids, it also makes our country more competitive in a security environment shaped by global energy markets.”
Today’s action advances President Biden’s Federal Sustainability Plan, which aims to create demand for local clean energy and create a more stable and resilient grid while supporting well-paying jobs. The Biden-Harris Administration continues to make progress under the plan to power federal facilities with 100% carbon free electricity by 2030, including:
- Signing agreements with utility Xcel Energy to work toward providing federal facilities in Colorado, Minnesota, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin with 100% carbon CFE by 2030; and supporting CFE in other areas such as the District of Columbia with Pepco.
- Launching a first-ever CleanUp to Clean Energy initiative to explore generating clean energy on DOE-owned lands.
With more than 300,000 buildings and 600,000 vehicles, the federal government is the nation’s largest energy consumer. To achieve its 24/7 CFE goal, the federal government is working with utilities, developers, and others to purchase electricity produced from resources that generate no carbon emissions, including solar and wind, for all its operations by 2030. With the scope and scale of this electricity demand, the federal government expects it will catalyze the development of at least 10 gigawatts of new American clean electricity production by 2030.