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Bill DiBenedetto headshot

Walmart’s Renewable Energy Power Surge

The EPA Green Power Partnership’s latest quarterly rankings of the top renewable energy buyers has few surprises but does underscore the idea that large, profitable corporations such as Intel and Walmart will always have the resources and numbers to stay atop the leader board, while setting a great clean energy example for everyone else.

Actually, Walmart was a mild surprise this time, moving to the No. 3 spot on the EPA list from 15th place in only three months. The world’s largest retailer went from 8 percent of gross power generated from renewable energy sources last October to 28 percent—872.4 million kilowatt-hours during the first quarter—in January. The increase was due largely to the company’s commitment to onsite renewable generation using biogas, solar and wind power generation at its California and Texas facilities.

As usual, Intel was the leading renewable power user with 88 percent of its electricity (more than 2.5 billion kWh) coming from solar and wind resources provided by Sterling Planet, PNM and on-site generation.

Also as usual, Kohl’s Department Stores occupied second place on the EPA list. The retailer generated 100 percent of its electricity use (1.52 billion kWh) during the quarter from solar and wind resources provided by 3Degrees, Nexant, Sterling Planet and on-site generation.

Following Walmart in the top five are the retailers Whole Foods Market and Johnson & Johnson.

The top 20 green power users in the latest rankings follow. The entire list is available from the EPA's website.

1. Intel Corporation
2. Kohl's Department Stores
3. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. / California and Texas Facilities
4. Whole Foods Market
5. Johnson & Johnson
6. City of Houston, TX
7. Starbucks
8. City of Austin, TX
9. Staples
10. Hilton Worldwide
11. HSBC North America
12. U.S. Department of Energy
13. City of Dallas, TX
14. Lockheed Martin Corporation
15. Cisco Systems, Inc.
16. U.S. Air Force
17. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
18. District of Columbia
19. TD Bank, N.A.
20. BNY Mellon

EPA said the top 50 largest purchases “amount to more than 15 billion kilowatt-hours annually, which represents nearly 70 percent of the green power commitments made by all EPA Green Power Partners.”

This list is not so much about powering powerful companies as it is about empowering the present through renewable energy, and it’s happening on a large scale right now.

[Image credit: EPA Green Power Partnership logo]

Bill DiBenedetto headshotBill DiBenedetto

Writer, editor, reader and generally good (okay mostly good, well sometimes good) guy trying to get by.

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