LOGAN — On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, SOPEC announced all 14 member communities will be supplied with 100 percent certified renewable energy.

The move is part of a new master supply agreement SOPEC has signed with AEP Energy that will start on the June 2020 meter-date. SOPEC is a regional council of governments that manages an opt-out community choice aggregation program for member communities, representing over 70,000 Southeast Ohioans. SOPEC has grown to become AEP Energy’s largest customer for opt-out community choice aggregation. SOPEC is governed by the communities it serves through representation by local officials.

Residents will also see savings compared to AEP Ohio’s default pricing and SOPEC’s previous contract. The new rate is 4.894 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) for generation and 5.171 cents per kWh in the City of Athens. AEP Ohio’s current default pricing for generation is 5.27 cents per kWh through May 31.

Athens’s pricing is inclusive of the carbon fee that over 76 percent of Athenians approved through voting in 2018. Customers in Athens can choose to not participate in the carbon fee, and/or the renewable energy product and still participate in SOPEC’s aggregation.

SOPEC signed the 12-month pricing agreement earlier this year and is excited by the new agreement, “Shorter price-terms allow SOPEC to stay responsive to the market,” according to SOPEC Board Chair and Athens County Commissioner Chris Chmiel.

Executive Director Luke Sulfridge also explained, “This new agreement also allows what we believe to be the most advanced solar net metering policy in Ohio.” Solar generators will be compensated for excess generation based on real-time market pricing between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Residents who have opted out of SOPEC in the past will need to call AEP Energy Customer Care: 1-877-726-0214 to re-enroll in the SOPEC aggregation program.

The 100 percent renewable energy supply is backed by the purchase of Green-e Energy certified renewable energy credits (RECs). Individuals will have the option to step down to a non-renewable product.

Another feature of the new program includes an annual $25 credit for each SOPEC electric aggregation customer to use at the AEP Energy Reward Store, a one-stop online marketplace filled with a variety of energy-saving and connected-home products.

SOPEC communities consume over 200,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) annually, with the City of Athens representing nearly a quarter of the electricity load. SOPEC also manages a municipal and non-profit Public Pricing Program with an additional 30,000 MWh of usage. Contact SOPEC for more details on enrollment details on the Public Pricing Program.

SOPEC’s mission is to be the leading public electricity aggregator for Ohio communities by providing energy planning and management services that keep more dollars circulating locally to create high-value programs that support energy efficiency, renewable energy, and local jobs.

SOPEC is a council of governments serving the energy needs of Albany, Amesville, Athens, Athens County, Buchtel, Chauncey, Glenford, Jacksonville, Logan, New Straitsville, Racine, Shawnee, Somerset, and Trimble.

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