Think globally, power locally: Hydro plants serve neighbors

WALKILL, N.Y. (AP) — You’ve heard of supporting local agriculture. Some Hudson Valley residents in New York support local electricity.

They purchase production credits produced by a hydro site along the Wallkill River.

Green-minded customers support a local renewable resource, while operators have a way to keep their turbines spinning. Hydro proponents hope arrangements like these can help keep these older energy sites competitive in the 21st century.

Natural Power Group sells power under New York’s “community-distributed generation” program. The policy allows electricity customers to collectively invest in renewable projects, mostly solar, in their utility service territory.

The hydroelectricity still flows into the grid. But customers reserve a percentage of the power generated by a hydro project.

Officials in nearby Woodstock said their hydro purchases help keep the town government meet its carbon-neutral goals.

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