Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) presented its 13th annual Green Power Leadership Awards to 21 Green Power Partners and three suppliers for their achievements in advancing the nation's renewable electricity market. Close to one-third of America's carbon pollution -- a greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change -- comes from power plants. By using green power, communities, businesses and organizations can dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, support America's growing renewable energy industry, improve public health, and help transition the United States to cleaner energy sources.
"Our 2013 Green Power Leadership Award winners are driving new renewable energy generation and providing clear examples of organizations thriving on innovation and sustainability," said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. "These winners are moving us closer to the vision President Obama outlined in his Climate Action Plan--cutting harmful pollution and promoting American leadership in renewable energy."
EPA defines green power as electricity that is generated from renewable resources, such as solar, wind, geothermal, biogas and low-impact hydroelectric sources and produces no fossil fuel-based carbon pollution. The winning organizations are recognized for dramatically increasing their green power purchases, installing large-scale solar panel arrays, and leading innovative renewable energy procurement efforts, among other actions.
The 2013 Green Power Leadership Award winners are listed below in the following categories:
Sustained Excellence in Green Power: Intel Corporation (Santa Clara, Calif.); Kohl's Department Stores (Menomonee Falls, Wis.); Staples (Framingham, Mass.)
Green Power Partners of the Year: Cisco Systems, Inc. (San Jose, Calif.); Georgetown University (Washington, D.C.); Microsoft Corporation (Redmond, Wash.); The Ohio State University (Columbus, Ohio)
Green Power Communities of the Year: Cincinnati, Ohio; Mercer Island, Wash.
Green Power Purchasing: Accredo Packaging, Inc. (Sugar Land, Texas); Dell Inc. (Round Rock, Texas); Pearson (Upper Saddle River, N.J.); Powdr (Park City, Utah), The North Face (Alameda, Calif.); U.S. Department of Energy (Washington, D.C.); UW Credit Union (Madison, Wis.); Western Pennsylvania Energy Consortium (Pittsburgh, Pa.)
On-site Generation: Apple Inc. (Cupertino, Calif.); County of Santa Clara, Calif.; Kaiser Permanente (Oakland, Calif.); Volkswagen Group of America Chattanooga Operations, LLC (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
Green Power Suppliers of the Year: 3Degrees (San Francisco, Calif.); Dominion Virginia Power (Richmond, Va.); Sterling Planet (Atlanta, Ga.)
The 21 award-winning partners were chosen for their exemplary use of green power from more than 1,500 partner organizations, including Fortune 500 companies, small and medium sized businesses, local, state and federal governments, and colleges and universities. Utilities, renewable energy project developers, and other green power suppliers were eligible to apply for the Supplier of the Year Award, which recognizes leadership in voluntary renewable energy offerings.
EPA also announced the winners of the third annual Green Power Community Challenge, a national competition between communities to use renewable energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the collective participation of local governments, businesses, and residents. Out of 48 competing communities, Washington, D.C., won the challenge for a third year in a row for using the most green power annually with more than one billion kilowatt-hours (kWh). Oak Park, Ill., also won the challenge for a second consecutive year for achieving the highest green power percentage of total electricity use at 92 percent.
EPA, through the Green Power Partnership, works with partner organizations to reduce the environmental impacts of conventional electricity use. Nearly two-thirds of partners use 100 percent green power. All together, the partners are voluntarily using more than 28 billion kWh of green power annually, equivalent to avoiding carbon pollution created by the electricity use of more than three million average American homes each year.
More on the Green Power Leadership Awards: http://www.epa.gov/greenpower/awards/winners.htm
More on the Green Power Community Challenge: www.epa.gov/greenpower/communities/gpcchallenge.htm
More on the Green Power Partnership: www.epa.gov/greenpower