DeKalb County signs on as first vendor to provide Green Energy to Georgia Power customers

DeKalb County is about to cash in on the trash at its Seminole Road landfill and provide a renewable source of energy to Georgia Power customers at the same time.

On Tuesday, the DeKalb County Board of Commissioners voted in favor of the development of a new Landfill Gas Generation plant at the Seminole Road facility and approved a 10-year contract to sell the energy to Georgia Power. The utility will offer the energy to its customers as part of its voluntary Green Energy program.

“We are excited to be a part of this win-win situation,” said Vernon Jones, DeKalb County CEO. “We now can utilize the methane gas from the landfill to generate electricity that will benefit all Georgians.” According to Georgia Environmental Protection Division rules, DeKalb County has an obligation to burn the methane gas from the landfill. The new plant will meet that obligation and generate revenue for the county.

In July of 2003, the Georgia Public Service Commission approved a Green Energy program for Georgia Power. Under that program, customers who choose to participate will pay a $5.50 premium for each 100-kilowatt-hour block of “green energy” that they purchase. By participating in this program, customers will help advance renewable technologies, which will help lower their cost over time and make them more competitive with traditional generation methods.

Georgia Power has made several attempts to find a vendor to produce Green Energy at prices that are low enough to make the program affordable to customers, but until the deal with DeKalb County the company has been unsuccessful in its efforts.

“We are pleased to sign this contract, and we look forward to providing our customers with a Green Energy choice,” said Mike Garrett, Georgia Power’s president and CEO. “This partnership with DeKalb County is an excellent starting point for our Green Energy program.”

The DeKalb County project, which will be overseen by the Sanitation Division of the Public Works Department, will provide enough electricity for more than 18,000 blocks of energy on an annual basis.

Customers who sign up for Georgia Power’s Green Energy program will be asked to fulfill a 12-month agreement with options to renew at the end of each anniversary period.

While DeKalb County is the first Green Energy vendor to sign a contract, Georgia Power continues to negotiate with other vendors and hopes to announce other providers in the near future. The Seminole plant will consist of two 1.6 megawatt engines initially and could be expanded to a third engine in the future. The project is expected to begin producing electricity in the fall of 2006.

Customers who are interested in signing up for Green Energy can go to; or call 1-800-735-7791. Customers who choose to participate will not be billed the premium until electricity is flowing from Green Energy projects.