The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently announced the winners of the 2012 College University Green Power Challenge and the top winner in the Green Power Challenge is the University of Pennsylvania.

In addition, more colleges and universities who are participating in the Challenge are located in Pennsylvania than any other state in the nation. Of the 73 universities participating, 17 are located in Pennsylvania and are buying green power - - power from renewable resources.

The University of Pennsylvania beat out 72 other schools across the country by purchasing more than 200 million kilowatt hours (KWh) of green power or 48 percent of its total power purchases.

Green power is generated from renewable resources such as solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, biogas, and low-impact hydropower. The University of Pennsylvania has taken first place honors in the challenge for the fifth consecutive year and its green power use is equivalent to avoiding greenhouse gas emissions of approximately 27,000 passenger vehicles each year.

“By purchasing green power from renewable sources, these 17 Pennsylvania institutions are spurring the development of the nation’s green power market and reducing harmful air pollution,” said EPA’s mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin. “Their commitment to renewable energy, especially at the University of Pennsylvania, is contributing to the growth in green jobs and a green economy.”

The other 16 Green Power Partners in Pennsylvania are: Duquesne University in Pittsburgh; Dickinson College in Carlisle; Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster; Haverford College in Bryn Mawr; Swarthmore College in Swarthmore; Gettysburg College in Gettysburg; Philadelphia University in Philadelphia; Drexel University in Philadelphia; Juniata College in Huntingdon; Eastern University in St. Davids; Allegheny College in Meadville; Bucknell University in Lewisburg; Mercyhurst College in Erie; Chatham University and Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh; and Marywood University in Scranton.

For more information on the winners:

For more information on EPA’s Green Power Partnership: