In the current market for renewable energy, 100 percent renewable electric power supply must be provided for an independent aggregation program, like the City is creating, through the purchase of Renewable Energy Credits (RECS). It is an additional goal of the City that 100 percent renewable power supply using RECS should be provided only through Green-e RECS, which are independently verified through a third party and are generally a requirement of certification programs like LEED for Cities (Shaker Heights is LEED Gold certified in this program). Ultimately, the City hopes to source power from newly-built renewable energy projects, ideally within the State of Ohio. There is currently more demand than supply for large renewable projects in Ohio, so it may take several years before this is possible.
Until these new projects are available, the City will contract for Renewable Energy Credits. This means that for every electron used in the program, a corresponding electron was generated through wind or solar somewhere in the U.S. and fed into the grid. Since there is no difference in electrons, a REC is how we establish that the electrons we are using have been offset by renewably-generated ones somewhere on the grid. This is verified by an independent third party.