The U.S. Air Force is ranked number one on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) 2006 Green Power Top 25 list released at the end of January. The list compiles the top companies, organizations, and government institutions that voluntarily purchased the most renewable energy.
The EPA defines green power as electricity generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources such as solar, wind, geothermal, biogas, and low-impact biomass and hydro resources. This type of power accounts for almost 2 percent of the country’s electrical supply.
In first place, the U.S. Air Force purchased more than 1 million megawatt hours (MWh) annually. In second place is Whole Foods Market, which purchased more than 450,000 MWh annually. The company was previously number eight on the list, but it is now the largest U.S. corporate purchaser of renewable energy credits. According to the EPA, the entire Top 25 list is buying enough energy to power more than 300,000 homes a year or remove the emissions of nearly 400,000 cars from the road annually.
“EPA’s partners continue to meet President Bush’s call to diversify our nation’s energy supply by promoting alternative and renewable energy sources,” said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. “These leaders in environmental stewardship are making the voluntary decisions to switch to green powerhelping to decrease our nation’s overall dependence on foreign sources of power.”
Those on the list are also a part of the EPA’s Green Power Partnership, a voluntary program that seeks to increase the use of green power. The Green Power Partnership began in 2001, and participants use green power for a portion of their electricity in return for EPA technical assistance and recognition. The program currently has more than six hundred partners, which are now purchasing more than 4 million MWh of renewable energy, an increase of nearly 100 percent since end of 2004.
Below is the Top 25 list and the types of green power they utilize.
1. U.S. Air Force – Biomass, geothermal, small-hydro, solar, wind
2. Whole Foods Market – Biomass, geothermal, small-hydro, solar, wind
3. U.S. EPA – Biogas, biomass, geothermal, wind
4. Johnson & Johnson – Biomass, small-hydro, solar, wind
5. U.S. Department of Energy – Various
6. Starbucks – Wind
7. The World Bank – Wind
8. Safeway, Inc. – Wind
9. U.S. General Services Administration (Region 2) Biogas, wind
10. HSBC North America – Wind
11. City of San Diego, California – Biogas, small-hydro
12. New Jersey Consolidated Energy Savings Program – Biogas, biomass, small-hydro, wind
13. Advanced Micro Devices/Austin, Texas Facilities – Biogas, wind
14. WhiteWave Foods – Wind
15. Staples – Biogas, biomass, solar, wind
16. Austin (Texas) Independent School District – Biogas, wind
17. Mohawk Fine Papers, Inc. – Wind
18. The Tower Companies – Wind
19. FedEx Kinko’s – Various
20 (tie) U.S. Army/Fort Carson – Biomass, wind
20 (tie) University of Pennsylvania – Wind
22. Montgomery County, Maryland – Wind
23. Hyatt Regency/Reunion & DFW Airport Hotels – Various
24. Western Washington University – Wind
25. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania – Wind