Google joins ranks of green power elite

Two giants of technology – Google and Ingram Micro – have been recognized as giants of renewable energy under the Environmental Protection Agency‘s (EPA) Green Power Partnership.

The EPA recently released its list of the top 50 purchasers under this partnership, which collectively use more than 14 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power on an annual basis, equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide emissions from the electricity use of more than 1.2 million average American homes.

Green power as defined by the EPA includes solar, wind, geothermal, biogas and low-impact hydropower. In adding Google and Ingram Micro to its list of top Green Partnership purchasers, the EPA recognizes the efforts of both companies in purchasing renewable energy credits (RECs) to offset energy use, generating renewable energy onsite and investmenting in renewables.

Google’s green power accomplishments include purchasing green power from NextEra Energy Resources, Renewable Choice Energy and Puget Sound Energy. 

Additionally, the tech superpower helped to create the largest residential solar fund in the U.S. and has invested in several renewable energy projects, including what’s planned to be the world’s largest wind farm, the Alta Wind Energy Center near Tehachapi, Calif., and the Ivanpah solar project in California’s Mojave Desert. (Google has also signed two long-term contracts to purchase the output from over 200 megawatts of wind generation in Iowa and Oklahoma, at set prices over 20 years).

Ingram Micro’s corporate headquarters in Santa Ana, Calif., is purchasing more than 3 million kWh of green power every year, enough to completely offset the facility’s electricity use, and then some.

The company is buying RECs from Renewable Choice Energy. 

Newsweek’s 2011 Green Rankings put Ingram Micro at No. 33, leading the technology distribution industry with its efforts to lessen its impact on the environment.

More information on the EPA’s Green Partnership top 50 is available online.

Susan DeFreitas, EarthTechling