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AU Receives EPA 2012 Green Power Leadership Award

By Ravi Raman

EPA presents AU with energy award

AU Director of Sustainability Chris O’Brien accepts the 2012 Green Power Leadership Award

American University received a 2012 Green Power Leadership Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at the Renewable Energy Markets Conference. As one of only four universities nationwide to receive the award, AU was recognized as a leading green power purchaser for its commitment and contribution to helping advance the development of the country’s voluntary green power market.

The EPA’s recognition of AU as a Green Power Partner is the result of the university’s purchase of 55 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually from renewable energy certificates (RECs) from Renewable Choice Energy. The RECs are enough to meet 100 percent of AU’s purchased electricity use.

“We’re proud to receive this prestigious award from the EPA,” said Director of Sustainability Chris O’Brien. “Purchasing green power helps us become more sustainable, meet our climate commitment, as well as set an example to others to support clean sources of electricity and help to fight climate change.”

AU is the 14th largest annual voluntary purchaser of green power according to the EPA’s latest Top 20 College & University List. The university’s current green power purchase of 55 million kWh is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of more than 7,000 passenger vehicles per year, or the equivalent amount of electricity needed to power nearly 5,000 average American homes annually.

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. Green power purchases also support the nationwide development of new renewable energy generation sources.

For more information about AU’s environmentally-friendly efforts, visit the Office of Sustainability website.