Hundreds protest at Dominion VA Power - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

Hundreds protest at Dominion VA Power

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The rain didn't stop several hundred people from protesting outside of Dominion Virginia Power's downtown headquarters.

These protesters say they want the company to invest more in renewable energy. They want to see Dominion invest more in solar and wind power.

Dominion says some of the money you pay in your energy bill goes toward developing renewable energy -- but these protesters say it's not enough.

Ryan Bowen is one of the protesters that marched around the building.

"Yeah it's raining pretty heavily out here," Bowen said.  "It's not just sprinkling out here. Everybody's soaked."

He's joining the chorus of protesters demanding Dominion invest more money in renewable energy. They say only 2.4 percent of the energy produced by the company is from renewable sources - most of it comes from nuclear, coal and natural gas.

"It's just kind of ridiculous that they're going to move forward with this fossil fuel kind of addiction," he said.

Mike Tidwell is the head of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. His group organized the protest.

"This is a big deal," Tidwell said.  "It's time that this company right here, Dominion, listen to rate-payers and invest in wind and solar and stop investing in dirty fossil fuels."

Dominion Virginia Power says it's not like the company disagrees with these protesters, but it's not as simple as investing more money in green energy. There are regulatory boards they say they have to receive approval from before they're able to make those investments.

Dominion says any research has to make business sense for the company. Still protesters say the money already being invested in nuclear and coal should go toward wind and solar.

"That money should be invested in renewables just as much," Bowen said.

Dominion says it's gotten federal grants to try and make offshore wind energy more affordable.

Dominion says it's also looking to install solar panels on commercial buildings. Still, the company says energy produced by wind is more than three times as expensive as coal and nuclear. 

Copyright 2012 WWBT NBC12.  All rights reserved.

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