Environmental, Local, Park Forest, Science

OPT IN as Park Forest Renews Municipal Aggregation Program

Park Forest, IL-(ENEWSPF)- Park Forest renewed its municipal aggregation program with supplier MC Squared. This will reduce the village’s carbon emissions by 26% by 2025. The program aims to equitably, quickly, and cost-effectively reduce the village’s residential and small commercial electrical use, which contributes significantly to its carbon emissions. The initiative is in line with the Paris Agreement to combat climate change.

The Village sent letters to residents on Feb 13, 2023, informing them of the municipal aggregation program. The letters are on Park Forest letterhead. Northern Illinois Municipal Electric Collaborative (NIMEC) has put together a FAQ sheet to help residents field any questions.

Aggregation Program Began by Referendum

The program builds on the current aggregation program in place. It provides electricity to the majority of homes in Park Forest with 100% green energy. Park Forest voters approved the program in a 2012 referendum, with 54% of residents approving participation.

Additionally, there are residents who have a different supplier than MC Squared, i.e. people who switched previously. They will receive a letter informing them of the program and giving them the option to opt-in. Most residents will receive a letter that notifies them of the aggregation extension. The letter will include a perforated card at the bottom of the page. Residents can drop this in the mail if they do not wish to participate. There is no cost to opt-out.

The power supply for the aggregation program will be 100% green energy. The rate is 7.99 cents per kilowatt-hour, which will not fluctuate over the life of the program. The current ComEd rate is 9.7ยข per kilowatt-hour. Opting in will result in a rate change.

Opt-Out at Any Time with No Penalty

Residents who participate in the aggregation program will still be billed by ComEd. They will still call ComEd if they have any outages. The only difference will be the rate. Participants can opt out of the program at any time. There will be no cancellation fees. Email Adam Hoover at NIMEC to do so.

The program supports Park Forest’s longstanding efforts in the area of sustainability and the Park Forest Sustainability Plan. All energy purchased in the program will be renewable energy.

Residents with additional questions about the electric aggregation program can contact Village Hall. Do so by email or by calling the village manager directly at 708-748-1129.

Note: OpenAI wrote the rough outline for this article or completed the initial editing of a press release sent to eNews Park Forest. Other journalists of the Local News Alliance, a nascent organization of five local online publishers, and I decided to experiment with this technology and learn its possibilities and limitations. One requirement of using the technology we agreed on is acknowledging our use of this tech in articles it helps us produce.

Source material for this article included remarks Village Manager Tom Mick made at Monday’s Village Board meeting. We also gathered information gathered from the Village of Park Forest website.

While helpful, we had to edit heavily the product the AI produced.