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Green Power and Renewable Energy

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Heightened interest in global climate change, acid rain, respiratory ailments, and smog have raised concerns about emissions of carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, mercury, methane, nitrous oxide, and particulate matter from burning fossil fuels. Concerns also exist about the other environmental impacts associated with traditional electricity generation fuel sources, such as the impacts of mining, drilling, processing, transporting, and disposing of fuels.

Fostering renewable energy production, developing better renewable technologies, and improving the environmental performance of conventional electricity generation benefits the environment, expands the diversity of the nation's energy supply, and improves the reliability of power supply systems. Through its purchases, onsite renewable energy systems, and outreach efforts, EPA supports the development of the green power market, a critical component in the long-term strategy to protect the environment.

EPA is the first major federal agency to purchase a volume of green power equal to 100 percent of its estimated annual electricity use nationwide.

To continue offsetting 100 percent of EPA facilities’ total estimated annual electricity consumption at all the Agency's 175 facilities with renewable energy certificates (RECs) through the end of fiscal year (FY) 2012, EPA signed three separate green power contracts in August 2011 for a total of 265 million kilowatt hours (kWh). Learn more about EPA's active and past blanket green power contracts.

For an explanation of the difference between delivered green power and RECs, or "green tags," review EPA's document Green Power: Tags vs. Delivered Product (PDF) (3 pages, 233 Kb, About PDF).

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