Photo via Meta Efficient
The EPA released its list of the top 50 purchasers of green power today, and it's loaded with surprises. From Fortune 500 companies to local city governments, the list shows off an encouraging trend towards the purchase of clean energy. Some use 100% green power, and others buy more than a billion kilowatt hours worth of it every year—and all deserve a nod for making the effort. So now, without further ado, the biggest purchasers of green power in the US: The company topping the list isn't much of a surprise: after all, it's the second year in a row it's found itself there. It's Intel—purchasing 1,301,200,000 kWh of wind power a year in order to run 46% of its total operation. This very feat earned the company a spot on our Best of Green list for major corporation.
More surprising is No. 2 on the list: PepsiCo, which buys green power for 100% of its energy needs, and clocks in at 1,144,773,154 kWh purchased, nearly doubling the amount bought by Kohl, the No. 3 spot.
Also notable is Dell, which buys enough clean energy to power 158% of its operations—it's unclear whether the excess goes back into the grid. Here are the Top 10 green power buyers: the company, the number of kilowatt hours bough, the percent of energy needs met by green power, and the kind of clean power they use.
The Top Green Power Buyers
1. Intel Corporation 1,301,200,000 - 46% - Wind
2. PepsiCo 1,144,773,154 - 100% - Various
3. Kohl's Department Stores 600,990,000 - 50% - Biogas, Biomass, Small-hydro, Solar, Wind
4. Dell Inc. 553,708,000 - 158% - Biogas, Solar, Wind
5. Whole Foods Market 526,995,000 - 100% - Solar, Wind
6. The Pepsi Bottling Group, Inc. 470,216,838 - 100% - Various
7. Johnson & Johnson 434,854,733 - 38% - Biomass, Small-hydro, Solar, Wind
8. U.S. Air Force 426,233,001 - 5% - Biogas, Biomass, Solar, Wind
9. Cisco Systems, Inc. 400,996,000 - 46% - Wind
10. City of Houston, TX 350,400,000 - 27% Govt. (Local, Municipal) Reliant Energy Wind
Some other notable green power buyers include the EPA itself, clocking in at No. 14 with 100% green energy, NYU (No. 26), which is also 100% clean powered, and the entire California State University System (No. 50).
The EPA releasing such lists makes for a good practice—the more publicity companies that purchase clean energy get, the more other will be encouraged to follow suit. But bear in mind, purchasing clean power does not a green company make. The No. 6 on the list there should scream that out—Pepsi Bottling Co.? Well, if they're going to mass produce plastic bottles, might as well not used coal fired power to do it—it's better than nothing. So despite whatever other shortcomings these companies may have on the environmental front, they do deserve commendation for these solid green power purchases.
Check out the full listings over at the EPA.