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Reprinted with permission from the September 25, 2003, issue of The Castine Patriot.

green wedding

Kathy Belyeu and Matt Clouse, who were married in Castine in a "green" wedding. Photo by Nina Fuller, Cape Elizabeth, Maine

CASTINE -- Smog, acid rain, global climate change-these weren't on the guest list for the Kathy Belyeu/Matt Clouse wedding September 13, 2003, at Trinitarian Parish Church in Castine, in what is believed to be Maine's first green-powered wedding.

"In the wedding planning process, Kathy and Matt were thinking about the seating arrangements, the dinner menu, the flowers, and the planet," said the Rev. William Freiderich, who performed the wedding ceremony, in a press release. "It's a great addition to the wedding planning checklist."

Through the purchase of green power through Maine Interfaith Power and Light and the Maine Green Power Connection, electricity for the wedding ceremony and the reception at the Manor Inn in Castine was rendered pollution-free.

"Conventional electricity generation is the nation's single largest industrial source of air pollution," said Erika Morgan of Maine Green Power Connection, which facilitated this first-ever sale of green power from a Maine-based wind generator. The Maine Green Power Connection is leading a marketing campaign to get 5 percent of Maine residents to switch to green energy by 2008. "We hope Kathy and Matt's wedding will raise awareness of how easy it is for Maine residents to choose non-polluting, green power," Morgan said. Green power is electricity generated from renewable energy sources, such as solar and wind.

Belyeu and Clouse live and work in Washington, D.C. Belyeu works for the American Wind Energy Association, the national trade association representing the U.S. wind energy industry. Clouse works for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, encouraging organizations to buy green power through an EPA voluntary program, the Green Power Partnership. His parents have a house in Castine, where they spend summers.

Maine Interfaith Power and Light is a nonprofit electricity aggregator that introduced Maine's first two green power products in January. The companion Maine Green Power Connection was introduced in March. Endless Energy Corporation is the owner/developer of the wind turbine in Orland. For more information on green power, visit www.mainegreenpower.org and .

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