Kohl's receives EPA Gregg Cooke Visionary Program Award
Kohl's Department Stores announced that the company received the Gregg Cooke Visionary Program Award at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Clean Air Excellence Awards Program ceremony held last night at Almas Temple in Washington, D.C. The award recognizes Kohl's for environmental excellence in multiple Clean Air Excellence Award Program categories, including clean air technology, community action and transportation efficiency.
“As a company committed to sustainability, it is our responsibility to do our part to achieve cleaner, healthier air in our communities,” said Ken Bonning, Kohl's executive vice president of store planning and logistics. “Initiatives like solar power, support of clean energy sources and moving merchandise by rail are win-win – they make sense from a business, cost and efficiency perspective and help to reduce emissions in the long-term.”
Established in 2000 at the recommendation of the Clean Air Act Advisory Committee, the EPA Clean Air Excellence Award Program annually recognizes and honors both individuals and organizations that have undertaken the risks of innovation, served as pioneers in their fields and have helped to improve air quality.
“Environmental innovation is the key to American progress, and our Clean Air Excellence Award winners offer amazing new examples,” said Gina McCarthy, EPA's Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation. “As we look to the future, these winners will lead the way to cleaner air and a healthier environment.”
Kohl's initiatives that contribute to cleaner, healthier air include:
• Clean air technology: Ranked first in retail and number two overall among EPA's top green power purchasers, 100 percent of Kohl's purchased electricity usage comes from renewable energy resources through its industry-leading solar program and by purchasing renewable energy certificates. The company also works annually to complete lighting upgrades, retrofitting more than 700 stores in 2009 with metal halide spotlights that use a third of the energy of incandescent spotlights. In addition, all remodeled Kohl's stores receive upgraded, more energy efficient lighting fixtures that produce even more light than the old fixtures.
• Community action: Kohl's is an active member of the Wisconsin Partners for Clean Air Steering Committee and works to support clean air initiatives in its home state. Nationwide, Kohl's works to ensure cleaner air by building and operating stores in an environmentally responsible way. As of fall 2008, all new Kohl's stores built from the ground up are constructed according to a prototype that has received Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) initial certification at the Silver level from the U.S. Green Building Council. Characteristics of these buildings include higher energy efficiency, careful management of construction waste, recycling, green housekeeping and use of regionally sourced building materials. Inaddition, nearly 500 Kohl's stores have earned EPA's ENERGY STAR label for superior energy efficiency.