U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Energy presented 2007 Energy Star awards to 12 Midwest businesses and organizations for their outstanding accomplishments in reducing greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency. They are among 80 national winners.

"We congratulate these Energy Star award winners for their commitment to saving energy and cutting greenhouse gas emissions," said EPA Region 5 administrator Mary Gade. "Not only are they helping the environment, they're helping their bottom line."

In 2006 alone, Energy Star helped Americans save $14 billion on their energy bills and prevent greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those of 25 million vehicles. To date, more than 2 billion Energy Star qualified products have been sold, and more than 725,000 new homes and 3,200 office buildings, schools, hospitals and public buildings have earned the Energy Star label.

EPA introduced the Energy Star program in 1992 as a voluntary partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through increased energy efficiency. Today, the program offers businesses and consumers energy-efficient solutions to save energy, money and help protect the environment for future generations. More information about the Energy Star awards is at http://www.energystar.gov/

Winners of the Energy Star sustained excellence award:

  • 3M, St. Paul, Minn.;
  • Veridian Homes, Madison, Wis.;
  • Whirlpool Corp., Benton Harbor, Mich.; and
  • Wisconsin Focus on Energy, Madison, Wis.

Winners of Energy Star partner of the year new homes award:

  • K. Hovnanian Homes, Minnesota Division, Eden Prairie, Minn.;
  • The Commodore Corp., Goshen, Ind.

Winners of Energy Star partner of the year energy management award:

  • Ford Motor Co., Dearborn, Mich.;
  • Jones Lang LaSalle, Chicago, Ill.;
  • McDonald's USA, Oak Brook, Ill.;
  • Schools for Energy Efficiency from Hallberg Engineering Inc.; White Bear Lake, Minn.

Winner of the Energy Star partner of the year product manufacturer award: Precision Entry Inc., Sugarcreek, Ohio.

Winner of the excellence in Energy Star promotion award: Sears Holdings, Hoffman Estates, Ill.