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EPA Recognizes Volkswagen Chattanooga for 'Green Power'
Volkswagen Chattanooga has received a 2013 Green Power Leadership Award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The annual awards recognize the country’s leading green power users for their commitment and contribution to helping advance the development of the nation’s voluntary green power market.
EPA presented Volkswagen Chattanooga with the award at an event held in conjunction with the 2013 Renewable Energy Markets Conference in Austin, Texas on September 23, 2013.
Volkswagen Chattanooga was one of only four organizations nationwide to receive a Leadership Award for the on-site generation of green power. The award recognizes EPA Green Power Partners who distinguish themselves using on-site renewable energy applications, such as solar photovoltaic (PV) or landfill gas. Volkswagen Chattanooga is currently generating more than 13 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power annually from an on-site solar energy system, which is enough green power to meet 12 percent of the organization’s electricity use.
“We are honored that the EPA has recognized us with a Green Power Leadership award for the renewable energy generated by the Volkswagen Chattanooga Solar Park at our LEED Platinum certified factory in Tennessee,” said Frank Fischer, CEO and Chairman of Volkswagen Chattanooga.
“Volkswagen’s worldwide conservation program is called Think Blue and it’s a global call to sustainable ecological action on our blue planet,” Fischer said. “Generating green power onsite is an important part of Volkswagen’s efforts to be responsible for our footprint in everything from powering our factory to powering our cars.”
Volkswagen Chattanooga currently ranks No. 15 on EPA’s Top 20 On-site Generation list, which highlights EPA Green Power Partners that have achieved the highest annual on-site green power generation through July 3, 2013. EPA updates its Top Partner Lists quarterly at http://www.epa.gov/greenpower/toplists/.
Green power is electricity that is generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources, such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, biomass, and low-impact hydro. Using green power accelerates the development of new renewable energy capacity nationwide and helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector.
“EPA is pleased to recognize Volkswagen Chattanooga with a Green Power Leadership Award for its distinguished commitment to using on-site renewable energy resources,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy.
“By investing in on-site green power, Volkswagen Chattanooga is generating cleaner electricity and reducing harmful carbon pollution, and providing a clear example of an organization thriving on innovation and sustainability.”
According to the EPA, Volkswagen Chattanooga’s current green power generation of more than 13 million kWh is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions of nearly 2,000 passenger vehicles per year, or is the equivalent amount of electricity needed to power nearly more than 1,000 average American homes annually.
The solar installation at Volkswagen Chattanooga is an element of the highly-coveted LEED Platinum certification awarded to VW by the U.S Green Building Council in late 2011. At that time, the Building Council called the Chattanooga manufacturing facility “the world’s greenest auto plant” and noted it was the first automotive manufacturing plant in the world to receive the top LEED certification. Today, the Chattanooga plant remains the only auto plant worldwide to earn the LEED Platinum certification.
The Volkswagen Chattanooga Solar Park occupies 33 acres, or half of the 66-acre land parcel adjacent to Volkswagen’s state-of-the-art manufacturing plant. The solar park contains 33,600 solar modules from JA Solar designed to produce 13.1 gigawatt hours of electricity per year -- equivalent to the energy consumed annually by around 1,200 homes in the area.
The electricity produced from the solar park is expected to meet 12.5% of the energy needs of Volkswagen’s Chattanooga manufacturing plant during full production and 100% during non-production periods. The plant covers 1.9 million square feet and employs around 2,500 people who manufacture the highly-acclaimed Volkswagen Passat sedan. For Volkswagen, the solar park in Chattanooga will rank as the automaker’s largest photovoltaic installation worldwide.
More Business News
Last Update on March 10, 2014 17:07 GMT
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama's top economists say the nation is on track to make economic progress over the next two years, but say it would do even better if Congress would enact the additional spending he proposed in his most recent budget. A divided Congress in an election year is not likely to heed that call.
In their annual report to the president, the Council of Economic Advisers says the nation's economy would grow by 3.3 percent in 2014 and 3.5 percent in 2015. It adds that unemployment would drop to 6.4 percent in 2015 and 6 percent in 2016. February's unemployment rate was 6.7 percent.
That forecast assumes that Congress would approve $56 billion in spending that is above the limits set in a bipartisan budget agreement earlier this year.
DUBLIN (AP) -- Yes, they have more bananas.
Fruit supply companies Chiquita of the United States and Fyffes of Ireland said Monday they had agreed to merge to create the world's biggest banana supplier.
The all-shares agreement means the two companies will become ChiquitaFyffes PLC, be traded on the New York Stock Exchange and be headquartered in Dublin, a more tax-efficient corporate base.
The companies said the deal, which requires shareholder and regulatory approval in Ireland and the United States, would generate $40 million in pre-tax savings through more efficient operations.
Current Fyffes and Chiquita shareholders each would own half of a combined operation expected to generate $4.6 billion in annual sales.
The two companies said the merger would create a banana behemoth that ships more than 160 million crates worldwide, about a quarter more than either of their main rivals, Dole and Del Monte. ChiquitaFyffes also would become the world's No. 3 distributor of pineapples and melons.
OAK BROOK, Ill. (AP) -- McDonald's says a key sales metric dropped 1.4 percent in the U.S. in February, yet again hurt by tough winter weather.
Global sales at locations open at least 13 months dipped 0.3 percent.
In the Middle East, Africa and the Asia Pacific region, sales declined 2.6 percent mostly on softness in Japan as well as weakness in Australia and a shift in the timing of the Chinese New Year.
Europe was a bright spot, with sales up 0.6 percent on a strong performance in the U.K. and growth in France.
McDonald's Corp., the world's largest hamburger chain, has been dealing with competition from rivals like Burger King and Wendy's, who also have value menus and special offers.
It is also trying to adapt to shifting eating habits by introducing items that are positioned as healthy or fresh.
NEW YORK (AP) -- Sbarro says it's filing for Chapter 11 reorganization, marking the struggling pizza chain's second trip through bankruptcy court in less than three years.
The filing comes shortly after it closed 155 of its U.S. locations. It still has more than 800 locations worldwide.
Sbarro had also filed for bankruptcy protection in April 2011 and emerged a few months later, saying that it significantly cut its debt and received a capital infusion. A new CEO then led a push to revitalize the chain's image by touting new recipes and ovens. But the efforts apparently didn't take hold.
Sbarro, based in Melville, N.Y., says its strategy of store closings and balance sheet restructuring will improve its profitability and reduce outstanding debt by more than 80 percent.
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- Alabama-based Peco Foods says it will build a new poultry plant, hatchery and feed mill in northeast Arkansas in a $165 million operation expected to create 1,000 jobs in two rural counties.
Gov. Mike Beebe announced the development Monday alongside Peco Foods President, CEO Mark Hickman and other local and regional leaders. The company plans to build in Randolph and Clay counties with the first phase of groundbreaking planned for next month.
Peco Foods is receiving more than $4.5 million in state and local incentives with additional tax breaks planned.
Hickman says the company picked Arkansas because of its "outstanding workforce," noting that its existing poultry plant in Batesville has been a success.
Based in Tuscaloosa, Ala., Peco Foods is the eighth-largest poultry producer in the country.
DALLAS (AP) -- American Airlines is getting more than $425 million from selling takeoff and landing slots at New York's LaGuardia Airport and Reagan National Airport outside Washington.
That price was disclosed Monday in comments filed in federal court in Washington by the U.S. Department of Justice.
The department says the value of those slots shows that it drove a hard bargain last year when it settled its antitrust lawsuit against the merger of American and US Airways. The airlines agreed to give up slots at LaGuardia and Reagan and gates at five other big airports.
The Justice Department filed its response to public comments on the settlement. Consumer groups, lawmakers, the Detroit airport and Delta Air Lines lodged complaints about the settlement.
NEW YORK (AP) -- American Airlines and JetBlue Airways Corp. are ending an agreement that allowed travelers to add connections to their itinerary on each other's aircraft.
The termination of the interline sales agreement is effective Monday.
The companies also said that they are ending a reciprocal frequent flyer program accrual agreement. Travelers won't earn miles or points when traveling on eligible routes run by the other airline beginning April 1.
All American AAdvantage miles or JetBlue TrueBlue points already accrued through the partnership will be credited to customers' accounts and are not affected.
Last month Delta announced changes to its frequent flier program. Starting next year, Delta customers will earn miles based on how much they spend, not just miles flown.
American Airlines Group Inc. is the holding company for American Airlines and US Airways.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Supreme Court has sided with a Wyoming property owner in a dispute over a bicycle trail that follows the route of an abandoned railroad. The decision could force the government to pay hundreds of millions of dollars to compensate landowners.
The justices ruled 8-1 Monday that property owner Marvin Brandt remains the owner of a 200-foot-wide trail that crosses his 83-acre parcel in southern Wyoming's Medicine Bow National Forest. The trail once was the path of a railroad and is among thousands of miles of abandoned railroads that have been converted to recreational trails.
Chief Justice John Roberts said the government was wrong to assert that it owns the trail.
The government says it faces compensation claims involving 10,000 properties in 30 states, possibly topping $100 million.
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