2021 National Clean Energy Week (NCEW)

And that’s a wrap for National Clean Energy Week! For the last five days (September 20–25), we’ve been celebrating organizations, innovators, and policies that have been impactful to the clean energy landscape in North Carolina. This nationwide celebration was made possible “by a network of national clean energy leaders dedicated to reducing emissions while growing the economy through smart policy and technological innovation.” Several different organizations from across the nation participated, including North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association (NCSEA). 

Over the course of the week, we amplified some awesome clean energy businesses in North Carolina who are all doing amazing work to push forward our clean energy future. Here’s a quick look at them below: 

  • Target Corporation | 500 Solar Installations
    • Committed to expanding their availability of EV charging stations at their stores and installed their 117th EV charging site late last year—ultimately exceeding their 2018 goal.
    • Announced earlier this year that the start of 3 new solar and wind power projects will move the needle to 50% of electricity sourced from renewable sources.
    • Was named an ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year for the fifth consecutive year. This means Target is using features such as low-wattage light fixtures, LED lights and motion sensors in the refrigerators, and other energy-saving initiatives to make their stores’ energy use as efficient as possible.
  • Outer Banks Brewing Station | www.obbrewing.com
    • The first wind-powered brewery in the United States and the first North Carolina business to produce wind power on the Outer Banks.
    • A great place to grab food, beer, all the while learning about wind energy! 💨

“The Outer Banks Brewing Station became the first wind powered brewery/restaurant in the United States when we dedicated our Bergey 10kw wind turbine on Earth Day in 2008.  The Turbine sits in our backyard on an 80 foot tower and has a diameter of 23 feet.  All of the power it produces is used inside our Pub.  It took 5 long years of politicking to get the town of Kill Devil Hills to approve it but it was worth the battle.  In addition to our harnessing of wind power, the pub recycles, composts, uses predominantly LED lighting, has two Tesla vehicle chargers and one universal vehicle charger and reuses the spent grain from our brewery to feed local area cattle that we in turn serve on our menu in our pasture to plate concept. For the last 13 years of operation, the turbine has become an iconic landmark on this environmentally fragile sandbar we call home. We pride ourselves in being innovative and conscious about our environment, while helping others learn about renewable energy and sustainability.”

  • Good Solar | www.goodsolarusa.org
    • Charlotte-based nonprofit committed to creating energy solutions for other nonprofit organizations and low- and moderate-income communities to promote social justice, combat climate change, provide community economic development, and build community resiliency.
    • Founded by University of Chapel Hill Law School graduates, Ethan Blumenthal and Miles Wobbleton.

“Clean energy enables Good Solar to achieve its core mission: promoting social justice. Clean energy improves the wellbeing of the communities and nonprofits that Good Solar serves by helping them lower their energy costs, create jobs, and improve public health through emission and pollution reduction. Clean energy can be one of the most powerful tools we have as a society to help achieve a future with equity—economic, social, and environmental—for all.”

Lastly, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper’s proclamation of the state acknowledging National Clean Energy Week was the icing on the cake! 

Overall, North Carolina businesses continue to do a stellar job in expanding our clean energy economy. We celebrate them all, not just this week, but every single day we do this work. NCSEA thanks everyone who participated and we look forward to celebrating again next year.  

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