environment, Green, News

Detroit Zoo goes greener yet with 100 percent renewable energy from wind farms

Wild Lights - Stars by Mark M_ Gaskill

If the Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) wants animals to have a planet that can support them, maybe that is why it continues to “go green” and is now powering its operations with 100% renewable electricity from wind farms.

To insure the lowest impact to the environment the DZS has purchased Renewable Energy Credits (REC), a tradable and nontangible energy commodity that represents 1 megawatt-hour that is provided by such renewable resources as wind or solar power provided to a grid. ITC Holdings Corp. will provide support for renewable energy through 2018.

“We continue to look for ways to reduce our ecological footprint and thank ITC for helping us to accomplish that goal,” said DZS Executive Director and CEO Ron Kagan. “Our hope is to inspire others to look to clean, renewable energy sources.”

Wild Lights - Arch of Lights by Mark M_ Gaskill

In recent years more and more companies have taken to reducing their energy output and its impact on the planet, the DZS now ranks among them. The DZS’s method of generating renewable energy will not only cut down on pollution and environmental impact, but also displace non-renewable sources from the electric grid.

The wind farms will also help build the market for renewable sources, which now account for less than 10% of electricity generated in the US.

“The Detroit Zoological Society and ITC share a commitment to environmental stewardship, and we are proud to support their sustainability goals by facilitating access to renewable electricity,” said Dr. Terry S. Harvill, vice president of International and Merchant Development for ITC Holdings Corp. and a DZS board member.

The Detroit Zoo’s RECs are certified by Green e Energy, which provides independent, third-party certification to ensure that renewable energy products meet strict environmental and consumer-protection standards.

This is just the most recent of the Detroit Zoo initiatives to aid the planet Earth, all of which are part of the DZS Greenprint. Greenprint aims to increase green literacy and the actions taken by the community and improve the green practices at the Detroit Zoo and Belle Isle Nature Zoo. Green initiatives include discontinuing the sale of bottled water at the Detroit Zoo and building the first zoo-based dry biodigester in the country.

The steps taken by the Detroit Zoological Society, the non-profit that runs the Detroit Zoo, earned it the 2015 Green Award from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. It was also named 2015 Best-Managed Nonprofit by Crain’s Detroit Business.

Remember to vote for the Detroit Zoo in  USA Today’s 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards Best Zoo Lights in the US contest. You can help our zoo win by voting … every day … on multiple devices through noon on December 21. Click here to vote.

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