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In addition to carbon and methane, other anthropogenic greenhouse gases include nitrous oxides and fluorinated gases, including sulfur hexafluoride.
Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) is a potent greenhouse gas that is used as an electric insulator in high-voltage equipment along the power grid. The company implemented best management practices to minimize SF6 emissions from its electric transmission and distribution system, including the inspection of switch gear for gas pressure (which indicates leakage), replacing or conducting maintenance on leaking equipment, using SF6 charging and reclamation equipment, removing SF6 before breakers are sold or scrapped, testing and reusing (i.e., recycling) SF6, deploying laser leak-detection equipment, and following extensive written procedures and conducting training for the handling of SF6. We continue to reduce our SF6 equipment leak rate and emissions.
From 2000 to 2019, we reduced the emissions rates of nitrogen oxide, sulfur dioxide, and mercury from our power generation fleet, measured in pounds per net megawatt-hour, by 94 percent, 99 percent, and 97 percent respectively.
Greening Our Fleet
More than one in three vehicles in our 9,000-plus-vehicle on-road fleet is powered by alternative fuels. Our green fleet includes electric, natural gas, and biodiesel vehicles that are helping us to lower carbon emissions, improve conditions in the field, and reduce worksite noise levels.
Electric vehicles are gaining popularity across the country, including Dominion Energy’s Virginia and North Carolina service areas.
In 2019, we deployed our first 100-percent electric shuttle in Richmond, Va. This zero-emissions vehicle is the first of its kind in the area and provides a green transportation option for our employees in downtown Richmond. We continue to add electric vehicles to our catalogue and evaluate each new model that comes to market. Our goal is to convert 25 percent of the Dominion Energy Virginia light-duty fleet to battery-electric or plug-in electric vehicles by 2025.
In 2019, we took a variety of steps to help our employees make the shift to EVs. We started a pilot program to provide incentives for our employees to buy electric vehicles and install home charging stations.
We intend to have workplace vehicle-charging stations at every one of our Virginia and North Carolina offices by 2021.
“Congratulations to Dominion Energy for earning a spot on this year’s Water “A” List – they are a model for true environmental leadership. Water security is an undeniable business risk if unaddressed. “A” List companies know sustainability presents an exciting race to the top, an opportunity to innovate and rethink business as usual, proving that environmental responsibility simply makes good business sense.”
EV education, incentives on new and used vehicles, workplace charging options, and discounts on home charging stations are all examples of Dominion Energy’s commitment to electric transportation and efforts to support employee interest in electric vehicles.