Release Date: April 25, 2016
BUFFALO, N.Y. – The University at Buffalo ranks first on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership list of the largest college and university green power users.
The EPA announced its latest quarterly Green Power Partnership rankings today (April 25). Lists are compiled for colleges and universities, federal and local governments, K-12 schools, Fortune 500 members, retail outlets and a national top 100 ranking, among others.
In addition to its No. 1 ranking on the Top 30 College and University list, UB ranks 29th in the National Top 100. UB, which joined the partnership in 2003, has made the colleges list several times, but before today its highest ranking was No. 11, in 2015. UB ranked 18th in January.
More than 130 colleges and universities across the country are Green Power Partnership members.
“EPA applauds the University at Buffalo for its commitment to using green power and for taking a leadership position on the environment,” said James Critchfield, manager of the Green Power Partnership. “UB is helping to reduce carbon pollution and provides an excellent example for other higher educational institutions to invest in environmental progress.”
UB uses nearly 213 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually, which represents 100 percent of its total power needs. In addition, the university is generating green power from on-site solar energy systems. These include the 3,200-panel Solar Strand that opened in April 2012, and a series of panels on the roof of Norton Hall.
According to the EPA, UB’s green power use of nearly 213 million kWh is equivalent to the annual electricity use of more than 19,000 average American homes.
UB has embarked upon numerous sustainability initiatives in recent years as the university works toward a goal of being carbon-neutral by 2030.
“UB is honored to be recognized by the EPA as a national leader in using clean, renewable energy. We are committed to making UB a more sustainable campus through a variety of green power initiatives,” said Laura Hubbard, UB's vice president for finance and administration.
Green power is zero-emissions electricity that is generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, eligible biomass and low-impact hydro. Using green power helps build demand for the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide and helps users reduce their carbon footprints.
As a result of its high national ranking, UB qualifies for the EPA’s Green Power Leadership Club, a distinction organizations earn by significantly exceeding EPA’s minimum green power use requirements.
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 nearly 1,400 organizations voluntarily using billions of kilowatt-hours of green power each year.