Carbon offsets are not needed to cover SVCE customer home or business-related electricity use emissions
While it may make sense for CCE customers to participate in carbon offset programs to offset their transportation-related emissions, these voluntary services are not needed to cover home or business-related electricity use emissions. SVCE’s default GreenStart offering is already carbon free! Participating in carbon offset programs for electricity would then be duplicative and also more expensive than participating in SVCE alone. It’d be like buying organic, and also paying extra for pesticide-free produce. Furthermore, SVCE’s voluntary upgrade to GreenPrime, our 100% renewable offering, is also cheaper than any other 100% renewable option for our Santa Clara County customers.
Furthermore, additional distinguishing characteristics of CCE compared to carbon offset programs supports the recommendation for electricity consumers to choose to participate in one program versus the other. California CCE renewable resources are located in the Western US power system, which means that the carbon-free power contracted by the CCE is actually being scheduled onto the grid and is included in the electricity that customers use. Alternatively, carbon offset programs typically source non-load-serving resources. CCE programs also source from a variety of sources, with the demand to power an entire region spurring further development of even more renewable supplies. Lastly, all CCEs are customer-owned, and return revenue to customers via reduced electricity generation rates and community-serving programs, while privately-owned carbon offset programs are set up to make a profit on their returns.