Gander Mountain is purchasing renewable energy to offset 100 % of the electricity used in all its Minnesota, North Dakota, Iowa, Kansas and Colorado stores as well as their St. Paul, Minn., headquarters. This landmark purchase of renewable energy credits is the largest by a retailer in the state of Minn.

“Gander Mountain has a long tradition of supporting conservation efforts and we are expanding that commitment to renewable energy,” said Mark Baker, president and CEO of Gander Mountain. “Increased growth of renewable energy allows our communities to help meet today's important energy challenges, diversifying our energy sources, preserving precious natural resources for future generations and proactively addressing climate change,” noted Baker.

As a facet of its “Keeping the Outdoors Safe for Tomorrow” program, Gander Mountain is purchasing 17,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) of renewable energy credits from renewable energy facilities including wind farms and biomass facilities.

This purchase of renewable energy from domestic sources in rural communities, will avoid more than 23 million pounds of carbon dioxide pollution in 2007. To have the same impact, more than 2,000 cars would have to be taken off the road or more than 3,100 acres of trees would have to be planted, according to statistics from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty applauded Gander Mountain's decision to support renewable energy.

“Minnesota is showing its leadership in a better, cleaner, more independent energy future,” said Governor Pawlenty. “It is gratifying that a company based here in St. Paul is the first outdoor retailer to purchase renewable energy for 100 percent of the electricity it uses in Minnesota.”

This purchase of renewable power is made possible by renewable energy credits (RECs). Since it is physically impossible to deliver electricity straight from a renewable energy facility to Gander Mountain stores, renewable energy credits make purchasing renewable power possible. RECs ensure that the amount of electricity the company uses is replaced onto the power grid with clean, renewable energy. Renewable energy producers sell RECs to better compete with fossil fuels, allowing consumers to choose clean, renewable energy.

Gander Mountain has chosen Colorado-based Renewable Choice Energy as its supplier of RECs. Renewable Choice Energy is a leading national provider that is building the market for clean and renewable sources of energy. “Renewable Choice Energy is excited to be working with Gander Mountain to make this important renewable energy purchase possible,” said Quayle Hodek, Renewable Choice Energy chief executive officer. “Gander Mountain has answered the call for a leader to demonstrate that renewable energy is ready for the mainstream,” he added.