Emerson College has been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for using more green power than any other school in the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) in the 2013–2014 academic year.
Emerson is receiving the Individual Conference Champion Award as a result of its green power usage.
Emerson has won this award from the EPA for the past few years, and was recognized this year even after the College joined a different athletic conference.
Since 2006, the EPA’s Green Power Partnership program has tracked and recognized the collegiate athletic conferences with the highest combined green power use in the nation.
Emerson used 15 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power for 100 percent of the College’s annual electricity usage.
According to the EPA, the amount of carbon dioxide that Emerson prevented from being emitted was equivalent to the annual electricity use of more than 1,000 average American homes, or more than 2,000 passenger vehicles.
“We are once again delighted that the EPA has recognized us for our efforts,” said Jay Phillips, associate vice president of facilities and campus services. “Emerson is always looking for ways to help reduce our carbon footprint, and we are excited to continue working with the EPA to help in our efforts.”
Emerson is buying renewable energy credits from Renewable Choice Energy. These are certified credits that are generated from a renewable energy source, which is wind power in Emerson’s case, that are used to offset carbon-based fuel generation, such as coal, oil, and gas.
“This demonstrates a proactive choice to switch away from traditional sources of electricity generation,” the EPA said in a statement, “and support cleaner renewable energy alternatives.”
The EPA designates green power as “electricity that is generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, eligible biogas, biomass, and low-impact hydro,” the agency said in a statement. “Using green power helps accelerate the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide and helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.”
The EPA’s Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that encourages organizations, such as Fortune 500 companies, small- and medium-sized businesses, state and federal governments, and colleges and universities, to use green power. The 1,200 organizations involved in the partnership receive expert advice, tools and resources, and publicity from the EPA, as well as recognition of credibility from the agency that allows for significant opportunities.