The City of Houston has been designated the number one municipal purchaser of green power and the fourth largest overall purchaser in the nation, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA this week released its list of top 50 green power partners using the most renewable electricity and named the City of Houston as a crucial leader in the alternative energy trend.
“Houston is already known as the energy capital of the world, but we are committed to becoming the alternative energy capital of the world as well,” said Mayor Annise Parker. “This ranking confirms we are taking the right steps in the right direction, and it’s going to benefit everyone.”
The City of Houston uses 50 Megawatts, or 32 percent of the City’s total electricity load, from wind energy. The City expects to use as much as 1.7 billion kilowatt-hours of renewable wind energy through 2013, equivalent to the amount of kilowatt-hours needed to power 26,000 homes each year. It also helps reduce the need to build more expensive power plants for the region’s rising energy needs. Additionally, the City is looking to increase the amount of renewable energy purchased.
The City, designated by the U.S. Department of Energy as one of its Solar America Cities, also is active in developing its own solar powered sources of energy. The City of Houston has solar power on a portion of the George R. Brown Convention Center, the City’s Code Enforcement building (3300 Main), Discovery Green Park and the City Hall Annex building (900 Bagby). In addition, the City of Houston recently received a $1.3 million State Energy Conservations Office (SECO) Distributed Renewable Energy Grant to purchase approximately 25 commercially available distributed renewable energy (solar) mobile generator systems to provide backup energy during an emergency.
The national top 50 list is available at www.epa.gov/greenpower/toplists/top50.htm. For information on EPA’s Green Power Partnership, go to www.epa.gov/greenpower. More details on the City of Houston’s green initiatives can be found at www.greenhoustontx.gov.