The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the Green Power Leadership Award Winners for 2023, honoring five leading U.S. organizations in the agency’s Green Power Partnership program. This year’s awardees are Elevance Health, Hormel Foods, Palo Alto Networks, The Home Depot, and Truckee Meadows Community College.
EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan said, “Use of clean, renewable energy is essential to meet America’s climate goals, and this year’s winners are innovating—across their core businesses, their supply chains, and their communities—to deliver compelling new strategies that will accelerate our transition to a clean energy economy.”
The EPA’s Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that helps increase green power use among U.S. organizations, including Fortune 500 companies; small and midsize businesses; local, state, and federal governments; and colleges and universities.
For more than 20 years, the Green Power Leadership Awards have recognized hundreds of partner organizations for their exceptional achievements. This year’s awardees are using more than 1.5 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually, enough to power approximately 145,000 average American homes for a year.
2023 Award Winners
Elevance Health Inc. (Indianapolis), an American health insurance company, is being recognized for its green power use and sector leadership. Elevance Health has used 100% green power since 2021 with approximately equal parts sourced through a 15-year solar financial power purchase agreement (PPA) of nearly 80 million kWh as well as 90 million kWh from retail renewable energy sources. The company prioritizes engaging with strategic value chain partners on setting scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and is actively engaged in community partnerships focused on advancing health equity, including through affordable solar engagement.
Hormel Foods Corp. (Austin, Minn.), a global food company, is being recognized for its green power usage, community solar development, and employee renewable energy engagement. Over the past year, Hormel Foods has increased its U.S. domestic green power use from less than 10% to 100% through a financial PPA that generates over 936 million kWh of green power annually. Additionally, Hormel Foods supports community solar in rural areas, sponsoring a community solar garden in Wichita, Kan., and serving as an anchor-tenant in a community solar project in Montevideo, Minn., which Hormel employees can subscribe to. Hormel also engages employees with its “Sustainability Best of The Best” internal competition, inspiring global teams to integrate green power into their processes.
Palo Alto Networks Inc. (Santa Clara, Calif.), a multinational cybersecurity company, is being recognized in part for its innovation in green power usage. Palo Alto Networks recently adopted science-based greenhouse reduction targets as internal key performance indicators (KPIs). Establishment of these targets as KPIs ties renewable energy use and progress toward emissions reduction targets to the company’s line of credit from investors and their access to capital. This year, Palo Alto Networks supported a pilot green tariff program by purchased over 15 million kWh as one of the first companies to participate in Silicon Valley Power’s Large Company Renewable Energy Program. The company also engages employees through its FLEXBenefits incentive program to support and increase access to renewable electricity purchasing and clean technologies for all employees.
The Home Depot Inc. (Atlanta), a multinational home improvement retailer, is being recognized for the company’s green power usage, enabling renewable energy project development, and installation of electricity storage technologies and projects at retail locations. The Home Depot purchases more than 400 million kWh of wind and solar power annually. Since 2022, the company has purchased green power directly from several new projects including a 50 megawatts (MW) wind project in Nebraska and two solar projects in Texas totaling 115 MW. The Home Depot also demonstrated dedication to grid improvements by installing 55 standalone battery storage projects in five different states with a total capacity of over 12 MW to bolster grid and facility resiliency and drive down peak demand costs. In 2022, the company provided retail access to solar panels for more than 7,000 homes and recorded sales of over 4,000 electric vehicle chargers.
Truckee Meadows Community College (TMCC), a community college in Reno, Nevada, is being recognized for their green power usage and educational programs. Since 2019, TMCC has matched 100% of its electricity load service with more than 7.8 million kWh of solar power purchased through its utility’s Nevada GreenEnergy Rider Tariff. TMCC also installed four on-site solar arrays and two wind turbines, which are used as an educational tool to provide hands-on training in the college’s Applied Technologies architecture and renewable energy programs. In 2022-23, TMCC declared a college-wide theme: “Year of Sustainability,” encouraging sustainable concepts to be used in wider areas of in-classroom education and hosted a series of events educating students about their commitment to green power.
More information on the EPA’s Green Power Partnership is available here.