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EPA Honors Saint Louis University for Excellence in Green Power Use

by Maggie Rotermund on 09/23/2020
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Saint Louis University was named by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as one of the agency’s 12 top Green Power Partners during its 20th annual Green Power Leadership Awards program. The EPA presented SLU with an Excellence in Green Power Use award at the 2020 Renewable Energy Markets Conference, which took place virtually Sept. 22.

Campus

The EPA named SLU as a Green Power Partner for 2020. Photo by Steve Long. 

Other companies recognized included Aldi, Equinix, Fifth Third Bank, Microsoft and Target Corporation.

“The 2020 Green Power Leadership Award winners are leaders in spurring innovation and promoting growth in the U.S. renewable energy market,” Anne L. Austin, principal deputy assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, said in a press release. “We commend their efforts, which help protect our environment and improve our air quality.”

Saint Louis University  greatly increased its green power use through a student-led initiative. Green power is electricity generated from environmentally-preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, eligible biomass, and low-impact hydro. 

In 2018, SLU become Missouri’s first institution of higher education to commit to matching all electricity used in student residence halls with renewable energy through Ameren Missouri’s Pure Power Program.

SLU students voted to tax themselves $20 a semester to reduce their carbon footprint to help defray the cost of purchasing Renewable Energy Certificates to replace energy used in residence halls.

In 2019, the University committed to purchasing 125 million kilowatts of renewable energy certificates, which effectively offsets the entire carbon footprint of SLU’s electricity use.

SLU ranks as No. 82 on the EPA’s National Top 100 list, and No. 12 on the Top 30 College & University list. Each list highlights EPA Green Power Partners using the most renewable electricity annually as of July 2020. EPA updates its Top Partner Rankings quarterly.

According to the EPA, SLU’s current green power use of 125 million kWh is equivalent to the electricity use of more than 11,000 average American homes annually.

About EPA’s Green Power Partnership

The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program that helps increase green power use among U.S. organizations to advance the American market for green power and development of those sources as a way to reduce air pollution and other environmental impacts associated with electricity use. The Partnership currently has more than 1,400 Partners voluntarily using more than 61 billion kilowatt-hours of green power annually. Partners include a wide variety of leading organizations such as Fortune 500® companies; small and medium sized businesses; local, state, and federal governments; and colleges and universities. 

About the Green Power Leadership Awards

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) co-sponsors the annual Green Power Leadership Awards with the Center for Resource Solutions. Now celebrating their twentieth year, the Green Power Leadership Awards allow EPA to recognize winners in the following award categories: Green Power Partner of the Year; Sustained Excellence in Green Power; Direct Project Engagement; Excellence in Green Power Use; and Green Power Community of the Year. This program recognizes the exceptional achievement among EPA Green Power Partners who distinguish themselves through green power procurement, market leadership, overall green power strategy, and overall impact on the green power market. The ceremony takes place at the Renewable Energy Markets Conference. 


Founded in 1818, Saint Louis University is one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious Catholic institutions. Rooted in Jesuit values and its pioneering history as the first university west of the Mississippi River, SLU offers nearly 13,000 students a rigorous, transformative education of the whole person. At the core of the University’s diverse community of scholars is SLU’s service-focused mission, which challenges and prepares students to make the world a better, more just place. For more information, visit slu.edu.