Mayor Luke Ravenstahl announced today that the Western Pennsylvania Energy Consortium (WPEC) has been chosen to receive a 2009 Green Power Leadership Award by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). These annual awards recognize the country's leading green power purchasers for their commitment and contribution to helping advance the development of the nation's voluntary green power market.
WPEC was one of only 10 organizations nationwide to receive a leadership award for its green power purchase. The consortium is currently purchasing more than 11 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually, which is enough green power to meet 10 percent of the organization's electricity use.
"It is an honor to receive this recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency," said Ravenstahl. "The consortium's green energy purchase is a great example of the environmental benefits that can be achieved through regional collaboration."
"EPA's Green Power Leadership Award winners are raising the bar for green power purchasing," said Kathleen Hogan, director of EPA's Climate Protection Partnerships division. "By using renewable energy, Western Pennsylvania Energy Consortium is helping our environment by leading our national transition to clean energy; they are a model for others to follow."
Green power is electricity that is generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, biomass and low-impact hydro. These resources generate electricity with a net zero increase in carbon dioxide emissions, while offering a superior environmental profile compared to traditional power generation sources.
Over the course of five years, the consortium will purchase enough renewable energy electricity to reduce the groups' carbon emissions by 44,800 tons of CO2. According to the U.S. EPA, this greenhouse gas reduction is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of more than 1,000 passenger vehicles per year, or is the equivalent amount of electricity needed to power more than 1,000 average American homes annually.
About Western Pennsylvania Energy Consortium
In 2007, Allegheny County and the City of Pittsburgh established the Western Pennsylvania Energy Consortium (WPEC) - a region-wide energy cost and consumption reduction program consisting of accounts from the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pittsburgh Water & Sewer, the Sports & Exhibition Authority and the Pittsburgh Zoo & Aquarium. The aggregated accounts are used in a reverse auction energy purchase conducted through Co-Exprise, a Wexford-based technology and strategic sourcing company, in order to gain the best possible price of electricity in cents per kWh.
About EPA's Green Power Partnership
The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that encourages organizations to buy green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with purchased electricity use. The Partnership currently has more than 1,000 Partner organizations voluntarily purchasing billions of kilowatt-hours of green power annually. Partners include a wide variety of leading organizations such as Fortune 500 companies, small and medium sized businesses, local, state, and federal governments, and colleges and universities. For additional information, please visit http://www.epa.gov/greenpower.
About the Green Power Leadership Awards
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) co-sponsors the annual Green Power Leadership Awards in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Energy and the Center for Resource Solutions. EPA recognizes winners in the following awards categories: Green Power Partner of the Year, On-site Generation, and Green Power Purchase. EPA's Purchaser awards recognize the exceptional achievement among EPA Green Power Partners who distinguish themselves through green power procurement, market leadership, overall green power strategy, and overall impact on the green power market. The Awards are held in conjunction with the Renewable Energy Markets Conference. For additional information please visit http://www.epa.gov/greenpower/awards/.
Monday, September 14, 2009
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Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl
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Pittsburgh, PA 15219
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