City of Philadelphia Designated A Green Power Community By EPA, Challenges Washington D.C. Government

 Philadelphia, June 20, 2012 – The City of Philadelphia has been designated a Green Power Community by the Environmental Protection Agency, demonstrating the City’s tremendous success in calling on residents, businesses, and institutions to partner with the City in leading the way in renewable energy use.  As the fifth largest city in theU.S.,Philadelphia is the largest municipality to receive the Green Power Communities designation, which requires that at least 3% of the city’s energy use be generated from renewable resources such as solar, wind, geothermal, biogas, and low-impact hydropower.

 

“When I came into office, I pledged to makePhiladelphiathe greenest city inAmerica, and as the largest city to be designated a Green Power Community, we are well on our way,” said Mayor Michael A. Nutter. “Choosing electricity from renewable resources like solar panels and wind turbines gives us the power we need to grow, but also to support job creation, to cut carbon emissions, and to bring additional clean, renewable resources online inAmerica. Using green power is a smart choice for our environment and for our economy.”

 

EPA Regional Administrator Shawn Garvin said, “As EPA’s largest Green Power Community, Philadelphia is among only a handful of local governments that have met or exceeded their pledges to our nation’s clean energy future by purchasing green, renewable power. I commend Mayor Michael Nutter for his continuous pursuit of numerous, practical ways to makePhiladelphiaa model green city.”

 

Philadelphians purchase nearly 600 million kWh of renewable energy each year.  This is equivalent to planting nearly 10.5 million tree seedlings grown for 10 years or taking 80,000 passenger cars off the road.  This renewable energy usage also represents more than 4 percent of the electricity purchased by all users inPhiladelphia.

 

WashingtonD.C.is currently the largest municipal buyer of green power. Mayor Nutter announced a challenge toWashington’s status. “I challenge Mayor Gray andWashingtonD.C.becausePhiladelphiais going to become the #1 city for in the purchase of green power,” said Mayor Nutter.

 

“I welcome this challenge from Mayor Nutter, and congratulate the City ofBrotherly Loveon its commitment to green power.  TheDistrict of Columbiaentered the Green Power Communities program last year at #1 and I’m seizing this opportunity to renew my challenge to our residents, businesses and institutions to stay on top.  I’m all for healthy competition, especially when it involves investing in clean, renewable power—so I say, ‘bring it on!” said Washington D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray.

 

In 2006,Philadelphiajoined EPA’s Green Power Partnership, a launching pad for becoming a Green Power Community.  As part ofPhiladelphia’s Greenworks plan, the City pledges that by 2015, twenty percent of the electricity used inPhiladelphiawill come from alternative energy sources.  The city’s municipal operations have already met this goal, using more than 127 million kilowatt-hours of green power, including generating solar electricity onsite at the city-owned Southeast Water Pollution Control facility.

 

“The Office of Transportation and Utilities manages the procurement of electricity for the City, and we are committed to purchasing green power,” said Rina Cutler, Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities. “As a City government we continue to focus on becoming more energy efficient while also diversifying our energy supply to include more renewable sources of energy. Clearly Philadelphia residents and businesses are doing the same, and we’re grateful to be recognized today by the EPA for our efforts.”

 

Philadelphiaorganizations and businesses, including members of the Philadelphia Green Power Community Collaborative, are actively committed to helpingPhiladelphiamaintain its standing as a leading Green Power Community and increase its use of renewable energy.  Members of the Philadelphia Green Power Community include: the City of Philadelphia, PennFuture, the Clean Air Council, the University City Neighborhood Association, Clean Currents, Community Energy, the Energy Cooperative, EverPower, Renewable Choice, Sterling Planet, Washington Gas Energy Services, and the EPA.

 

More information on EPA’s Green Power Communities: www.epa.gov/greenpower/communities

More information on EPA’s Green Power Partnership Program: www.epa.gov/greenpower

Philadelphia’s Green Power Community Collaborative: www.PhiladelphiaGreenPower.com

Green power providers in Pennsylvania: www.papowerswitch.com

 

EPA Media Contact: Bonnie Smith 215-814-5543, smith.bonnie@epa.gov

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