The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has recognized University of Wisconsin Credit Union in Madison, Wis., with a 2013 Green Power Leadership Award for its green power purchasing efforts.
UWCU was one of only eight organizations nationwide to be honored.
“We are proud to receive this prestigious award,” said Brad McClain, UWCU executive vice president and CFO.
“Purchasing green power helps our organization become more sustainable, while also sending a message to others across the U.S. that supporting clean sources of electricity is a sound business decision and an important choice in addressing climate change,” McClain said.
The award, presented Monday at an event held in conjunction with the 2013 EPA Renewable Energy Markets Conference in Austin, Texas, recognizes EPA Green Power Partners who distinguish themselves through purchases of green power from a utility green-pricing program, a competitive green marketer or a renewable energy certificate (REC) supplier.
The $1.6 billion UWCU currently purchases nearly 3 million kilowatt-hours of green power annually, enough to meet 100% of the organization’s purchased electricity use.
According to the EPA, this is the equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide emissions of more than 400 passenger vehicles per year, or is the equivalent amount of electricity needed to power nearly 300 average American homes annually.
UWCU said it has been an EPA Green Power Partner since 2011. Earlier this year, the credit union received the EPA’s Green Power Leadership Club designation for purchasing green power, making them the first credit union in the nation to earn the distinction.
Since 2008, UWCU has reduced its carbon dioxide emissions by 78% and water usage by 18% since 2007. All new UWCU branches follow LEED guidelines, the credit union said.