REI Steps Up to 20 Percent Green Power

Recreational Equipment Inc., announced at its annual meeting Monday that it will purchase 10 million kilowatt hours of green power, or 20 percent of the company’s national electricity usage.

The purchase of wind, landfill gas and solar generated electricity will provide 100 percent of the power for 17 of REI's 82 retail stores, and is equivalent to the annual use of more than 1,000 average homes. The switch to renewable resources eliminates over 5,500 tons of CO2, equivalent to removing more than 1,000 average cars from the road.

“Snow in the mountains and clean water in streams and lakes are essential to REI's mission of helping people enjoy the outdoors,” said REI President and CEO Sally Jewell.

“This is a significant addition to REI's commitment to being good stewards for the environment,” Jewell said. “While our grants program supports the work of thousands of volunteers caring for public lands and introducing young people to outdoor recreation, we also are taking a close look at our business practices to reduce our environmental footprint.”

REI has joined the Green Power Partnership, a voluntary partnership between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and organizations interested in buying green power. REI's purchase of 10 million kilowatt hours will place the company among the top 10 retailers in the country purchasing green power.

REI also has announced that it will be a founding member of the Seattle Climate Partnership, a group of Seattle employers working together on climate issues. The new partnership was announced Friday by Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels.

REI selected qualifying, Green-e certified, renewable energy contracts. In addition to reducing green house gas emission, in most cases these contracts also reduce the company's exposure to fossil fuel surcharges. Purchases include the following stores and suppliers:

• Brookfield, Wis.; WE Energies; sources: wind, landfill gas and solar
• Madison, Wis.; Alliant Energy/WP&L; sources: wind, landfill gas and solar
• Eugene, Ore. ; Eugene Water & Electric; source: wind
• Denver, Englewood, Boulder, Grand Junction and Lakewood, Colo.; XCEL Energy; source: wind
• Colorado Springs, Colo.; Community Energy; source: wind
• Fort Collins, Colo.; Fort Collins Utilities; source: wind
• Bloomington and Roseville, Minn.; XCEL Energy; sources: wind
• Dallas, Houston (two stores) and Plano, Texas; Green Mountain Energy; source: wind
• Pittsburgh; Community Energy; source: wind

REI is an outdoor retail co-op dedicated to inspiring, educating and outfitting its 2.8 million active members and the community for a lifetime of outdoor adventure. Founded in 1938 by a group of Pacific Northwest mountaineers seeking quality equipment, REI operates retail stores nationwide, two online stores – and – and an adventure travel company, REI Adventures. REI offers products from all of the top brands for human-powered outdoor recreation, including its own line of award-winning gear and apparel. While anyone may join or shop at REI, members pay a one-time $15 fee and receive a share in the company's profits through an annual member refund based on their purchases. As an active supporter of communities in which it does business, REI is committed to promoting environmental stewardship and increasing access to outdoor recreation through education, gear donations and financial contributions.