The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says the Department of Agriculture is one of the nation’s leading green power users. USDA is using more than 169 million kilowatt-hours of green power annually, which represents 35 percent of its total energy needs. The EPA recognizes USDA as number five on its Top 10 Federal Government list of the largest green power users. Additionally, USDA is number 43 on the National Top 100 list. The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program encouraging organizations to use green power to reduce the environmental impacts associated with electricity use. By using green power, USDA is reducing 120 million metric tons of CO2 per year, or the equivalent of taking 25 million cars off the road. USDA is generating green power from on-site renewable energy including solar, wind, biomass, hydro and geothermal systems. USDA also uses alternative fuels in vehicles, designs and constructs high-performance green buildings and promotes the use of biobased products.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting news service.
Green Power Partnership Program Overview
Energy use is fundamental to economic activity—powering homes and businesses. Historically, increased economic growth has been driven primarily by energy used from fossil fuels, with the unintended consequence of increased air pollution and climate change. However, a wide array of economically viable and environmentally preferable renewable energy technologies are available today.
In 2001, EPA launched the Green Power Partnership to increase the use of renewable electricity in the United States. The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that encourages organizations to use green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with conventional electricity use. In return for technical assistance and recognition, Partners commit to use green power for all, or a portion, of their annual electricity consumption. EPA defines green power as a subset of renewable resources that represent those resources that offer the highest environmental benefit.