Aqua America, Inc. (NYSE: WTR) announced today that the volume of its green power purchases have qualified it for membership in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Green Power Partnership. The company is now using nearly 13 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually, which is enough green power to meet 4 percent of the organization’s electricity use and qualify it as a Green Power Partner.
Aqua America is buying Green-e Energy Certified renewable energy certificates (RECs) from Constellation, a competitive energy supplier, offering electricity, natural gas, solar and renewable energy products and services to homes and businesses across the U.S. and Canada. Aqua America’s green power purchase demonstrates a proactive choice to support cleaner renewable energy alternatives. The company’s green power purchases are primarily of wind energy.
“This is a great honor and we are proud to be recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,” said Aqua America Chairman and CEO Nicholas DeBenedictis. “Our green power purchase is another step in our sustainability efforts. It helps affirm for other businesses across the U.S. that supporting clean sources of electricity is a sound business decision and an important choice in reducing climate risk.”
Green power is electricity that is generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, biomass, and low-impact hydro. Using green power accelerates the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide and helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.
“EPA is excited to welcome Aqua America, Inc. as a Green Power Partner and applauds the company’s purchase of green power,” said Blaine Collison, Director of EPA’s Green Power Partnership. “Using renewable energy can be one of the most effective ways that a company can address its carbon footprint, and we encourage other organizations to follow Aqua America's lead.”
According to the U.S. EPA, Aqua America's green power use of nearly 13 million kWh is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of nearly 2,000 passenger vehicles per year, or the CO2 emissions from the electricity use of more than 1,000 average American homes annually.
Aqua America’s Green Power Partnership is the latest in a series of green announcements the company has made since last year. The company has solar power installations at four of its treatment facilities and recently announced its intention to transition much if its Pennsylvania vehicle fleet to compressed natural gas. One of its non-regulated subsidiaries has constructed a water pipeline to deliver water to shale gas drillers eliminating thousands of truck trips from rural roadways.
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 electricity use. The Partnership currently has more than 1,400 Partner organizations voluntarily purchasing billions of kilowatt-hours of green power annually. Partners include a wide variety of leading organizations such as Fortune 500® companies, small and medium sized businesses, local, state, and federal governments, and colleges and universities. For additional information, please visit http://www.epa.gov/greenpower.
Aqua America is one of the largest U.S.-based, publicly-traded water utilities and serves almost 3 million residents in Pennsylvania, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Texas and Virginia. Aqua America is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol WTR. Visit www.aquaamerica.com for more information.