Individuals and businesses across the globe have increased their efforts to improve the sustainability of our planet. And with good reason. In addition to creating a healthier and safer environment, using energy-efficient solutions can lead to significant cost savings.

Some areas that have excelled in the initiative to “go green” have recently been recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency, with Pennsylvania topping the list.

State of sustainability

This week, Governor Tom Wolf announced that the EPA has recognized the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as the country’s top state government for its usage of renewable sources of energy, including wind, solar and water. Additionally, of all users of green power, Pennsylvania ranked in the top 30.

“To be recognized by the EPA for our commitment to using green power shows how dedicated we are to creating a ‘government that works’ for its citizens through finding ways to improve the economy, while at the same time promoting environmental sustainability,” Governor Wolf stated. “In addition to reducing our carbon footprint, we were able to increase our bottom line by saving $2 million through the competitive bidding of the commonwealth’s electricity.”

In the announcement, Governor Wolf also explained that the state government has a responsibility to use funds appropriately, as well as an obligation to preserve Earth’s resources for generations of the future. He added that by making a commitment to use green power and energy efficient solutions, it is able to fulfill both duties.

The EPA published these rankings through its Green Power Partnership, a voluntary program designed to motivate individuals and businesses to adopt sustainable solutions that reduce the consumption of power and energy. Participants include more than 1,400 companies, institutes of higher education and government agencies.

Switching to renewable sources of energy

For business or homeowners interested in using green power, the Green Power Partnership outlines clear guidelines for how to go about it on its website. After identifying how much energy is used and gathering essential data, the organization recommends using the Green Power Locator to find an nearby energy provider. This will allow users to find the firms that have received Renewable Energy Certificates, or RECs.

“It is imperative to choose an energy provider that has a Renewable Energy Certificate.”

This tool also guarantees that the energy company a person or business decides to work with is credible and committed to sustainability. Whether it be for a home, small business or commercial corporation, there is a wide array of benefits to be gleaned from going green – and just as many ways to do it. For example, you can invest in solar energy systems or simply make an oil-to-gas conversion.

But if you are looking to switch energy suppliers, there are a few key qualities you’ll want to look for. First, make sure you select a partner that has competitive rates. One way to guarantee you won’t have to worry about fluctuations in the market affecting your monthly bills is to choose a provider that offers fixed-rate plans. This will allow you to pay the same amount throughout the entire duration of your contract. Another important factor to consider is how capable the company will be at catering to the specific needs of your home or organization. Choose a business that has years of experience – not only in the industry, but in your area.