The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on September 24 presented its 12th annual Green Power Leadership Awards for achievements in advancing the nation's renewable electricity market. "Green power" is electricity generated from renewable resources, such as solar, wind, geothermal, biogas, and low-impact hydropower, and it produces little or no net increase of greenhouse gas emissions. For most municipalities, electricity usage is the single-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions.
The 24 award-winning partners were chosen from more than 1,300 partner organizations. Utilities, renewable energy project developers, and other green power suppliers were eligible to apply for the "Supplier of the Year" and "Program of the Year" awards. Among the categories were first-ever honorees for "Sustained Excellence in Green Power," including Intel Corporation, Kohl's Department Stores, Staples, and Whole Foods Market. In addition, the "Green Power Partner of the Year" awards went to the City of Austin, Texas, Hilton Worldwide, Microsoft Corporation, and the University of Oklahoma, and the "Green Power Community of the Year" winners were Beaverton, Oregon, and Oak Park, Illinois. See the EPA press release and the Green Power website.