October 2022 CarbonBetter® Impact Update
Every month we share the positive impact our customers have made through their use of CarbonBetter-certified 100% energy, which is included in every Provision clean energy supply plan. Each customer on these plans receives an email with their personal impact for the month, and this blog post reflects the impact all of our customers have made together since we became CarbonBetter-certified in October 2020.
We’re honored to be able to provide affordable clean energy that makes a real difference. Check out all of our past Impact Updates here!
Our Customers’ CarbonBetter Impact – October 2022 Update
Provision customers have funded 86,874 mWh of clean energy generation, which could power 9,341 homes for a year.*
Provision customers have offset 50,770 tons of carbon, which is like avoiding over 126 million miles of driving.**
Provision customers have funded planting 59,831 trees, which may sequester 986 tons of carbon in their lifetime.***
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It’s easy to contribute to the positive impact we make each month. All Provision energy plans include CarbonBetter clean energy, which helps you make a difference automatically when you use energy at home.
Our customers help fund clean energy generation through renewable energy certificates, offset carbon through carbon credits, and plant trees to aid in reforestation and increase our natural carbon-capturing capabilities. It’s never too late to start using your energy for good.
October 2022 Impact Update: Goat Lake Hydroelectric Project
About the Project
This month’s featured project is the The Goat Lake Hydroelectric Project, a 4.0 MW facility located on Pitchfork Falls Creek in southeastern Alaska, 6.5 miles north of Skagway. Provision purchased Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) for this project which generates an average of 17,110.8 mWh annually and powers the homes of local Alaskans. The lake is part of a larger hydroelectric project run by the Alaska Power and Telephone Company (AP&T) that first began in the Tongass National Forest in 1996.
100% renewable electricity is included automatically in every Provision electricity supply plan, and we use renewable energy certificates, or RECs, to deliver on our clean energy promise. Homes are connected to the power grid by transmission lines, and the electricity that’s supplied is derived from a variety of generation resources, both renewable and non-renewable. This is because when clean energy is generated and put on the grid, it’s mixed with other fuel sources there, making it difficult for environmentally conscious consumers to supply their homes with 100% clean energy.
Provision ensures more clean energy is put on the grid by funding renewable generators through the purchase of RECs. These certificates fund electricity generation equal to the volume consumed by Provision customers, thus leading to a cleaner grid and delivering on pour 100% clean energy promise. So far Provision customers helped fund over 70,000 mWh of renewable electricity using RECs.
How It Works
Goat Lake is fed by a glacier at its south end, and water flows through a bedrock notch 300 feet to the north, contributing a majority of the water that flows in Pitchfork Falls Creek. The water then flows into the Skagway River. Goat Lake has no dam and is used as a natural water reservoir with water pouring over the original bedrock notch.
Extending 369 feet horizontally across Goat Lake and 185 feet deep, an intake valve connects to a siphon pump via a 30-inch-diameter high-density polyethylene chloride (HDPE) penstock that narrows to a 28-inch-diameter steel penstock 82 feet before reaching the siphon house. Another 30-inch-diameter HDPE penstock connects the siphon pump to the valve house 704 feet away.
A catch basin is set up to catch runoff from the glacier moraine that would normally bypass the lake. Instead, the runoff is captured and sent to a pumpback house via an 18-inch-diameter HDPE penstock and returned to the lake via a 16-inch-diameter, 640-feet-long HDPE penstock that uses four pumps of varying horsepower.
There is also a 16-inch-diameter bypass flow pipe to redirect more water to Pitchfork Creek Falls when needed. And finally, a 28-inch-diameter HDPE penstock runs from the valve house to a 24-inch-diameter steel pipe that connects to the powerhouse.
The powerhouse contains one horizontal shaft Pelton turbine with a synchronous generator with a total capacity to generate 4.0 MW of energy. The turbine discharge is transported to the Skagway River via the tailrace. A small substation with a 34.5 kV transmission line is located next to the powerhouse. The transmission line follows the west bank of the river for 4,538 feet before ascending to the distribution line from Skagway, serving the U.S. Customs Border Station on the Klondike Highway.
Between 1994 and 2007 an effort was underway to stock Goat Lake with fish for sport but the effort was deemed unsuccessful due to low nutrient content and incompatible water temperature. Since the 204-acre lake is an unsuitable habitat for native fish populations and migratory fish have not historically been present in the area, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADGF), the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC) has no flow regime recommendations for the project to help protect local aquatic life.
A barrier downstream on the Skagway River prevents migratory fish from entering the area. A minimum flow of 8.5 CFS at Pitchfork Falls is maintained for aesthetic purposes during the summer months for 12 hours per day. Testing during the licensing of the project found no significant adverse effects on the water quality. In fact, the water quality was found to be pristine. This project has intentionally been left undeveloped by the United States Forest Service (USFS) to maintain a natural look, but recreational opportunities exist nearby that are unrelated to the project.
The Goat Lake Hydroelectric Project is located on land owned by the United States Forest Service (USFS) and the Alaska Department of Natural Resources (ADNR) in Tongass National Forest, and the project is run by AP&T. The 17,110.8 mWh of power generated annually by Goat Lake helps to power the homes of local Alaskans along with the other hydroelectric projects in the area.
As a Provision customer, the renewable energy certificates that you help provide support funding for the Goat Lake Hydroelectric Project and Alaska’s clean energy efforts. We make it easy for you to be able to offset your carbon footprint and support projects like these that help save our planet. It’s easy to use your energy for good with us!
Every Provision Customer Makes a Difference
About CarbonBetter Impact Calculations:
*The typical home in your area uses 9,300 kWh of electricity per year.
Impact is calculated based on our customers’ billings in the impact month, but planting, funding, and offsetting may not happen in that month. These activities must align with planting seasons and project life cycles to be effective. If you have any questions, please contact us at email@example.com.