Touchstone Energy Cooperatives is a cooperative federation composed of more than 750 local, consumer-owned utility cooperatives in 46 of the 50 United States. Touchstone Energy co-ops serve more than 30 million members. Touchstone Energy was founded in 1998. Most of its members are also members of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. The federation includes both generation and transmission cooperatives and distribution cooperatives. More than 88% of Touchstone Energys local electric co-ops generate at least a portion of their electricity from renewable resources. Touchstone Energys North Carolina cooperatives established the Bright Ideas grant program in 1993. The program provides educational grants of up to $3000 for teachers in North Carolina who fund classroom-based projects out of their own pockets.