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Green Power Partnership

Green Power Partnership Program Updates

Issue 10, July 15, 2013




Partner Spotlight: City of Houston, Texas

SC Johnson & Son, Inc.
Pictured L to R: Hunter Leemon, Director of Sales, Richmond Kickers; Courtney Gilbert, Dominion Green Power Program Coordinator, Dominion Virginia Power; Santiago Lucio, Director of Community Outreach, Richmond Kickers

The City of Houston, Texas, has been a leading user of green power among municipalities since it joined the Green Power Partnership in 2008, winning a Green Power Leadership Award during its first year as a Partner and consistently ranking No. 1 or 2 on the Top 30 Local Government List. Houston has already achieved its current goal of purchasing 50% green power by 2015 and has set a future goal to purchase 100% green power by 2020. Recently the City provided GPP with additional insight on its experiences with green power and future plans:

Q: Why did the City of Houston decide to use green power?
A: With the leadership of Mayor Annise Parker, the City of Houston has decided to use green power because the City is committed to becoming the alternative energy capital of the world. Purchasing green power reduces the environmental impacts of electricity use, decreases the cost of renewable power over time and supports the development of new renewable energy generation. Taking advantage of more cost effective and cost competitive renewable energy certificate (REC) prices, this green power purchase exemplifies the City's ability to balance fiscal responsibility and environmental sustainability.

Q: Describe any innovative green power strategies the City of Houston has implemented or is planning.
A: Through its 5-Star Program, the City is helping residents and builders install renewable energy projects. Builders receive incentives to build energy efficient homes and add photovoltaics and solar thermal as upgrades to newly completed homes. In addition, with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy's SunShot Rooftop Solar Challenge grant, the City is working to streamline the solar permitting process.

Q: What are two or three lessons you've learned in making the switch to green power or in increasing your green power use?
A: In the City’s experience with purchasing green power, we've observed that the private sector usually buys renewable energy certificates (RECs) from December through February, which drives up the price. Buying RECs during the "off-peak" season is more cost effective. Also, it is important to continuously work on reducing energy consumption in municipal buildings, which Houston has been doing, as this will help reduce operational costs and help compensate for the purchase of RECs.

Read more about the City of Houston's sustainability initiatives. Exit EPA Disclaimer

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By the Numbers

Nearly 140 Green Power Partners are local government entities, including cities, towns, and villages. Combined, they are using more than 3.2 billion kilowatt hours (kWh) of green power annually – which is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide emissions from the electricity use of more than 340,000 average American homes annually. Below is a breakdown of Local Government Partners based on their percentage of green power use.
Green Power Partners graph

On Twitter? Post this fact: Nearly 140 local gov't entities are in the @EPA Green Power Partnership, using over 3.2 billion kWh of #greenpower! http://1.usa.gov/YVS0Me

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GPP in the News

Exit Disclaimer

The sites linked from this section are not on the EPA Web site. Please see our disclaimer information.Exit EPA Disclaimer

Here's what a few of our Partners are saying about their commitments to green power in recent press releases:

LG Electronics USA on increasing its green power use:
"Environmental sustainability is a core business principle at LG, so we are particularly proud to be recognized by the U.S. EPA for our leadership in the Green Power Partnership program," said Wayne Park, president and CEO, LG Electronics USA. "Using green power helps our organization become more sustainable, while also sending a message to others across the U.S. that supporting clean sources of electricity is a sound business decision and an important choice in addressing climate change." (June 20 full release)

Walmart announcing new solar installations:
"Solar power makes sense for Walmart, and it makes sense for Maryland," said David Ozment, Walmart's senior director of energy. "We are committed to increasing the use of renewable energy, including solar panels, at our stores in Maryland and throughout the country." (June 25 full release)

Recent Articles
June 25: Creve Coeur Patch, EPA Recognizes Creve Coeur with Green Power Community Award
June 20: FuelFix, Houston to buy half its power from renewable sources
June 9: Business World Magazine, Helping in Efforts to Go "Green"

For more, please visit the GPP Newsroom.

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Did you know?

According to a 2013 analysis by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in the fourth quarter of 2011 there were 3.4 million green jobs in the United States, including employment in the renewable energy sector. Read more interesting facts about jobs in renewable energy and energy efficiency in this fact sheet by the Environmental and Energy Studies Institute. Exit EPA Disclaimer

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Upcoming Webinar

Aligning Green Power Partners with New Renewable Energy Projects
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
1:00-2:30 pm (EDT)
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power Partnership
Register Here Exit EPA Disclaimer

This webinar will provide a forum for attendees to learn about new, not-yet-built renewable energy projects that may align with their energy, environmental, and financial objectives.

The session will feature several short project presentations from renewable energy developers as well as a Q&A session. Developers will discuss project details, business models, and participation opportunities for attendees such as green power off-take, renewable energy certificate (REC) procurement, financial investment, and equity ownership opportunities. All projects to be presented on the webinar meet EPA's definition of eligible green power resources.

The webinar agenda will be as follows:

  • 1:00-1:10: Introduction & Webinar Logistics
  • 1:10-1:20: OneEnergy Renewables (Solar PV, Maryland)
  • 1:20-1:30: Apex Clean Energy (Wind, Maryland, Midwest & Texas)
  • 1:30-1:40: Geronimo Energy (Solar PV & Wind, Midwest & Georgia)
  • 1:40-1:50: OwnEnergy, Inc. (Wind, Iowa)
  • 1:50-2:00: Norvento USA, LLC (Wind, Kansas)
  • 2:00-2:10: LoneStar Wind Power Co. (Wind, Texas)
  • 2:10-2:30: Additional Q&A

EPA previously hosted two similar "alignment" webinars. Projects submitted for the initial pilot webinars, held on November 10, 2011, and July 17, 2012, can be accessed at http://www.epa.gov/greenpower/alignment/index.htm.

The webinar is provided solely as an information service to Green Power Partners. A renewable energy project's inclusion in the webinar does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by EPA.

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Upcoming Events

Renewable Energy Markets Conference: Discounted Registration Closes July 29

Registration is now open for the annual Renewable Energy Markets (REM) Conference taking place in Austin, Texas from September 22 – 24, 2013. Organized by the nonprofit Center for Resource Solutions Exit EPA Disclaimer and supported by EPA, REM is the nation's premier forum for the energy community to gather, learn from each other, and recognize best practices for promoting renewable energy. EPA will present its annual Green Power Leadership Awards at the conference.

Don’t wait to register – discounted Early Bird Registration ends on July 29. Visit the conference website Exit EPA Disclaimer for more information about the conference agenda, and registration. We hope to see you there.

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2014 Climate Leadership Awards Application Period Now Open!

The U.S. EPA's Center for Corporate Climate Leadership and its three NGO partners -- the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), and The Climate Registry (The Registry) -- are now accepting applications for the 2014 Climate Leadership Awards, which call national attention to exemplary corporate, organizational, and individual leadership in response to climate change.

The application period will be open through September 13, 2013, with a new early bird deadline of August 7, 2013. Visit EPA's Climate Leadership Awards webpage for details about the awards and application process at www.epa.gov/climateleadership/awards/.

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Past Issues

GPP Program Update, Issue 9, June 17, 2013
GPP Program Update, Issue 8, May 13, 2013
GPP Program Update, Issue 7, April 8, 2013
GPP Program Update, Issue 6, March 11, 2013
GPP Program Update, Issue 5, February 20, 2013
GPP Program Update, Issue 4, January 14, 2013
GPP Program Update, Issue 3, December 17, 2012
GPP Program Update, Issue 2, November 26, 2012
GPP Program Update, Issue 1, October 22, 2012

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