Exclusive: Biden admin plans major carbon-free electricity buy
The General Services Administration and Department of Defense are looking for suppliers that could provide federal facilities in 13 Mid-Atlantic and Midwest states with 100% carbon-free electricity by 2030.
Why it matters: Such a clean energy procurement would be one of the government's largest on record for its vast real estate portfolio.
Zoom in: The request for information that GSA and the DoD are publishing specifically looks for contractors who could offer carbon-free electricity for civil and defense agencies, located where the PJM Interconnection is the regional transmission operator.
- This is a part of the grid that coordinates electricity transmission through all or parts of states where there are significant government assets, including Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C.
- The agencies expect to seek about 2.7 million megawatt hours of carbon-free electricity per year, which the GSA said is equivalent to powering about 250,000 homes for a year.
- The agency confirmed to Axios that it plans to make the purchase at the size stated in the RFI sometime this spring or summer.
The big picture: The government's latest move to buy renewable electricity for federal facilities follows up on a 2021 executive order. President Biden called on the federal government to transition to 100% carbon-free electricity on a net annual basis by 2030.
- In a statement, the GSA said it has already signed agreements that would increase the government's reliance on clean energy from 38% to 47%.
- According to GSA data, the government is the country's largest energy consumer and maintains more than 300,000 buildings and 600,000 vehicles.
What they're saying: "The federal government is a steady customer prepared to make long-term investments," said GSA Administrator Robin Carnahan in a statement.
- "We're using the government's buying power to spur demand for clean, carbon pollution-free electricity," she said, noting the potential for the purchases to create more renewable energy-related jobs.