Starbucks (No. 8) is part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) updated list of the Top 50 Green Power Partnership organizations voluntarily using clean, renewable electricity from resources such as solar, wind and low-impact hydropower.

Intel Corporation tops the list as the largest single user of green power, followed by Kohl's Department Stores and Microsoft Corporation. Combined, the Top 50 partners are using more than 15 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually. Through their use of green power, these top organizations are avoiding carbon pollution equal to that created by the electricity use of more than 1.3 million American homes each year.

At No. 8, Starbucks' annual green power usage is 421,535,000 kWh. The company uses 46.8 percent of green power via providers 3Degrees, Nexant, Seattle City Light and Tri-County Electric Cooperative. It uses Biogas, Geothermal, Small-hydro and Wind.

Starbucks has earned the Green Power Leadership Award in 2005, Green Power Leadership Award in 2007 and Partner of the Year in 2006.

The chain's profile reads: "Since the day we opened our very first store in 1971, Starbucks has been committed to doing business responsibly and in a manner that earns the trust and respect of our customers and neighbors. Energy use makes up roughly 80 percent of our directly controlled carbon emissions. That makes it our single biggest impact on the climate — and our single biggest opportunity to make significant improvements. We're working to conserve these resources by analyzing our performance and implementing new solutions to increase efficiency. We're also helping to transform the energy landscape by supporting the development of the green power market. We are purchasing RECs equivalent to more than 50 percent of our stores' electricity use globally, and have committed to cover 100 percent of their use by 2015."

McDonald's USA LLC, at No. 11, was also listed for the first time this year. Thirty percent of its energy use is green, powered by wind through providers 3Degrees and Sterling Planet. Its annual green power usage is 306,000,000 kWh.

EPA's Green Power Partnership works with more than 1,300 partner organizations, more than half of which are small businesses and nonprofit organizations, to voluntarily use green power. Green power resources produce electricity with an environmental profile superior to conventional power technologies, and produce significantly fewer greenhouse gas emissions.

"For the first time, each of the Top 50 partners is using more than 100 million kilowatt-hours of green power annually," said Lisa P. Jackson, EPA administrator. "Their actions help to reduce harmful carbon pollution that threatens the health of our planet and the air we breathe, and mark another step toward a new era of clean, innovative American energy."

Read more about sustainability.

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