Deb's Big Backyard

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It's Easy to Go Green (Energy) in Oak Park

By Deb Quantock McCarey


It's not easy being green.


Not for Kermit the Frog, or any of us “green folk” in Oak Park, now that the full up continuation of Oak Park’s previous 100% renewable energy commitment was rescinded by the current VOP board in the run up to Earth Week 2014.


The day after the decision was made, Gary Cuneen of Seven Generations Ahead told me that "to save residents $4 per month by purchasing greenhouse gas-emitting brown energy over green energy...will continue to exact climate change consequences that will affect Oak Park pocketbooks and quality of life in real terms much greater than $4 per month."


I am on that page, as well, even though if I were to take the "brown energy" option, I could splurge by lining up four bucks worth of joe at The  Buzz Café, or Eastgate Café, my neighborhood go-tos.


But, of course I am joking, and obviously won't be doing that.


That's because an opt in for a green (100% renewable) energy alternative, Plan B if you will, is available.


Phew...fewer fumes?  Thumbs way up for that.


The only catch is that you have to do it before May 8.


Here's how: by now we all should have received a letter, with a detachable form, from Constellation, our new energy supplier.  It gives us an "opt-out code."  With that code, and our ComEd account number (it's on our monthly bill), we can call 1-800-718-1493 to opt in to reduce our carbon footprint by using alternative "green energy" in our homes.  


For folks who have already signed up for the "brown energy" program, they can reverse their decision by calling the 800 number, but do have your account number handy, as you will need it.


Additional enrollment  info about the Village's electrical aggregation program is now available, as well.


So, very soon I will be spending $4 a month more to live a little greener for me, you, all our kids, the butterflies, the bees, the birds, everyone and everything on our Earth.


To celebrate my personal high five to the planet, and more, I 'm heading to  Earth Fest 2014 in Oak Park on Saturday, April 26.    


Join me.  I’ll be the one talking up composting and humming a familiar Muppet tune, ’cause I’m 100%  with Kermit on this one..."I am green, and it'll do fine.  It's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be."

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