Renewable Energy

Go Green Renewable Energy.
In this section you can:

  •         Totally Green
  •         Net Metered System
  •         Net Metering Rebates
  •         SMPA's Green Fund
  •         Tri-State's Responsible Energy Plan

Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the future.

The SMPA Green Fund

The mission of San Miguel Power Association, Inc. includes the goal of "providing our members with... environmentally responsible electrical service."

In recent years, the falling cost and proliferation of renewable energy technologies have been allowing power consumers to be more selective about the electricity they use. San Miguel Power Association brings these choices to you. This suite of options gives consumers full power over their own carbon footprint due to electricity consumption.

These programs are made possible by the SMPA Green Fund.  It is a pool of money, separate from the SMPA General fund, that acts as a funnel.  Its voluntary input programs collect money, which is then channeled to outcome programs that help participants tap into renewable energy and reduce their carbon footprint.

Green Fund Funnel Diagram

Green Fund Inputs:

Totally Green

Green Fund Feeder: The newest and simplest way to use 100% renewable energy. Now, every drop of electricity you use is coming from renewable sources like solar wind, and hydro.  Estimated cost for an average residential home: $8 - $10 per month.

  • One-time sign up
  • 1¢ per kWh bill adder
  • Renewably-sourced energy, dude!

Sign up for Totally Green here!

Green Blocks Logo

Green Fund Feeder: Members can buy extra renewable energy in 100 kWh blocks.  A flexible way to offset home or business energy use, or other components of a carbon footprint.  Buying one Green Block is equivalent to not driving your car for 1,800 miles or planting 1/2 acre of trees.

  • Offsets energy consumption
  • 1 Block = 100kWh = $1.00
  • Avg. Home uses 800 - 1,000 kWh/mo.

SMPA White Paper: Renewable Energy Credits (RECs)

Frequently Asked Questions

Sign up for Green Blocks

Green Cents Logo

Green Fund Feeder: Power bills are rounded up the nearest whole dollar.

  • Simple, Easy, Voluntary (opt-out)
  • Round-up program
  • Average cost: $7.00/yr.

Members may cancel participation any time during regular business hours by calling (970) 864-7311.

Increase amount of contribution or cancel participation for Green Cents, or call your local SMPA office.

Round Up Ex


Solar Panel and Hydro Generator Images

Green Fund Feeder: Contracts with local renewable power generators provides an income stream for the Green Fund.

  • Local, Renewable Projects
  • Power Purchase Agreements
  • Under 5% Wholesale Contract Carve-out

Green Fund Outcomes:

Leaf-Penny Icon

Green Fund Output: Help defray the cost of renewable power systems.

  • Solar Photovoltaic Residential
  • Solar Photovoltaic Commercial
  • Small Wind Residential
  • Solar Domestic Hot Water

See what rebates are available.

IQ Weatherization Logo

Green Fund Output:

  • "I.Q." = Income Qualified
  • I. Q. Weatherization
    • Complete Energy Audit
    • Home Efficiency Upgrades
    • No Cost to Member
  • I.Q. Solar
    • Efficiency Upgrades Completed
    • Solar Array - Norwood, CO

Learn more about the IQ weatherization and solar programs.

Sun Water Icon

A construction worker standing amid a newly-built solar array.

Image of solar panels in the Paradox Valley

In December of 2011 SMPA signed a contract that gave birth to the single largest community-owned solar facility in the U.S. at the time, in Paradox Valley.  This project went on to win the Best Solar Collaboration Award in the U.S. for 2012 from Solar Power Generation International.

  • Output: 1 Megawatt (MW)
  • Major consumers: Alpine Bank, Telluride Housing Authority, Telluride School District
The Ouray Hydroelectric Plant in Ouray

Built in the 1890s, the Ouray Hydroelectric Power Plant has been called the pioneer electric plant of the American West. Thanks to the determination of visionary owner, Eric R. Jacobson, and plant engineer, Chris Dobbins, this forerunner of the national electric grid and of our modern lifestyle is, amazingly, still producing power today.

  • Output: Generates ≈ 4 Million kWh/yr
  • Oldest operating hydro plant in United States
Coal Creek Hydroelectric Generator, South of Ridgway
  • Output: 150 kiloWatts (kW)
  • South of Ridgway
  • Enough to power SMPA operations in Ridgway & Silverton
A celebration in front of the I.Q. Solar Array in Norwood
  • Dedicated to income-qualified members
  • Prerequisite: efficiency measures at no cost to resident.
The Last Dollar Community Solar Array
  • Community Solar Garden
  • Qualified TEMP/REMP mitigation
Pandora Hydroelectric Plant


  • Output: 320 kW / 1.5 million kWh/yr
  • Historic site/legacy infrastructure
  • Double H2O use when combined w/ 500 kW Bridal Veil Hydro

Solar Dollar Icon

Green Fund Output:

  • Member-owned (Behind the Meter)
  • Electricity flows both directions
  • SMPA provides when system is not producing
  • Production credited to Bill

Learn more about net metering.

Piggy Bank Icon

Green Fund Output: The cheapest kWh is the one you never use.

  • Check out our efficiency rebates
  • Use SmartHub to track your energy use

Learn more about energy efficiency rebates.