CHICAGO (April 7, 2009) - In its ongoing effort to address climate change, Exelon announced today that as of the end of 2008 it had reduced its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by more than 35 percent from 2001 levels. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently approved Exelon's reduction of nearly 6 million metric tons in carbon emissions - an amount equal to the annual emissions of approximately 1 million passenger vehicles. Stantec, an independent third-party provider of environmental consulting services, also verified the reduction.
Exelon's GHG emissions reduction not only exceeded its voluntary EPA Climate Leaders program goal of 8 percent, but also shows significant progress on the company's carbon reduction strategy, Exelon 2020: A Low-Carbon Roadmap. Exelon 2020 sets a goal of reducing, offsetting or displacing more than 15 million metric tons of GHG emissions per year by 2020. This is more than the company's carbon footprint in 2001, its first full year of operation. Exelon 2020 is the natural evolution of the company's early climate change initiatives and expands the reach of its emissions reduction programs beyond the Exelon family of companies to its customers, communities, suppliers and the markets it serves.
Exelon Chairman and CEO John W. Rowe announced Exelon's carbon reduction achievement today in a speech at the Energy Information Administration 2009 Energy Conference in Washington, D.C.
"As a national energy policy begins to take shape in Washington, we believe that our industry must take decisive action to address climate change," Rowe said. "For Exelon, reducing our greenhouse gas emissions is both an environmental and a business necessity. We committed to a voluntary reduction goal under the EPA Climate Leaders program to demonstrate that we could achieve meaningful carbon reductions. We expanded that goal with Exelon 2020, which will drive our transition to a low-carbon future."
"Exelon's leadership on reducing its greenhouse gas emissions shows us all what can be accomplished through sustained commitment and action," said Kathleen Hogan, Director, Climate Protection Partnerships Division at the U.S. EPA.
Consistent with its cost-efficient approach, Exelon initially focused on its operations to achieve most of its early GHG reductions, including:
- Retiring less efficient and higher-emitting fossil fuel power plants in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Texas
- Reducing leakage of GHGs, including sulfur hexafluoride, from its electricity transmission and distribution systems and natural gas delivery systems
- Increasing energy efficiency in its buildings
- Increasing the fuel efficiency of its vehicle fleet.
"Our progress to date highlights the important role of competitive markets in enabling the transition to a low-carbon economy," said Rowe. "We believe that competitive energy markets are critical in driving economical decisions, such as retiring inefficient fossil plants and pursuing the most cost-effective emissions reductions first. Competition also impels us to advocate for federal cap-and-trade legislation, which we believe will address climate change at the lowest possible cost to customers."
Exelon continues to implement numerous initiatives this year working toward its Exelon 2020 goal. These include: further increasing the energy efficiency of its buildings, power plants, vehicle fleets; continuing to engage its suppliers to create an industry-leading green supply chain; procuring renewable energy to offset a portion of Exelon's energy consumption; and expanding customer energy-efficiency programs offered by Exelon's energy delivery subsidiaries, ComEd and PECO, including Smart Grid pilot programs. Exelon also plans to continue to increase the output of its nuclear power plants through uprates to offer more low-carbon electricity in the marketplace.