It’s expected that the Philadelphia Phillies have the power to hit the ball out of the park. But when it comes to green power, the Phillies and the 15 other winners of the Green Power Leadership Awards are all showing they can hit a home run, too! These partners, who represent retail, travel, athletic teams, U.S. military, universities and communities, are being recognized by EPA for buying green power and helping advance the nation’s green power market, according to a recent press release.

“Our nation is shifting to a ‘green culture’ and Americans understand that environmental responsibility is everyone’s responsibility,” said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. “EPA commends our partners for making a long-term commitment to protecting the environment by purchasing green power.”

The Green Power Partners purchase nearly 5 billion kilowatt-hours of green power annually, equivalent to the amount of electricity needed to power more than 460,000 average American homes. The purchases made by these organizations will also avoid the same amount of CO2 emissions that 640,000 vehicles would produce in one year.

EPA is recognizing winners in three award categories at the Eighth Annual Green Power Leadership Awards in Denver, Colo. Winning organizations are judged on their purchase, leadership, overall green power strategy and impact on the green power market.

Green power is generated from renewable resources such as solar, wind, geothermal, biogas, biomass and low-impact hydro. Green power sources produce electricity with an environmental profile superior to conventional power technologies and no human-caused greenhouse gas emissions. Purchases of green power also help accelerate the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide.

EPA co-sponsors the Green Power Leadership Awards in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Energy and the Center for Resource Solutions.

2008 Green Power Leadership Award winners are:

Green Power Partner of the Year:Bellingham, Washington Community; Cisco Systems Inc.; Intel Corp.; University of Pennsylvania; WhiteWave Foods Co.

Green Power Purchasing: City of Houston, Texas; ING; Merritt 7 Venture, LLC; Oregon State University; PepsiCo Inc.; Powdr Resorts; The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc./Operations; The Philadelphia Phillies; U.S. Air Force.

On-Site Generation: Lundberg Family Farms; Kohl’s Department Stores.