Alliance to Save Energy Taps Ted Turner, Whirlpool, Durst, NAIMA As ‘Stars of Energy Efficiency’

Release Date: Wednesday, May 5, 1999

A media king, an appliance industry giant, a trail-blazer in building design, and a staunch proponent of energy efficiency will receive the Alliance to Save Energy’s highest awards for their accomplishments in public service, environmental education, and energy efficiency at the Alliance’s May 12 black-tie "Evening with the Stars" dinner at the International Trade Center here.

Ted Turner, vice chairman of Time Warner Inc., will receive the Charles H. Percy Award for his outstanding public service in support of environmental education. Whirlpool Corporation, the Durst Organization Inc., and the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association (NAIMA) will also be recognized as Stars of Energy Efficiency.

"We simply cannot discuss continuing our way of life in the next millennium without first addressing clean, sustainable uses of energy," explains Turner. "I would much rather be recognized for educating people about the environment than be on the Forbes 400 Wealthiest Americans list."

While his wealthy peers compete to circumnavigate the globe in balloons, billionaire Ted Turner has set his sights on a far loftier goal: saving the planet from environmental ruin. With his $1 billion pledge in 1997 to help United Nations population programs, Turner sparked a national debate as to the responsibilities of the rich. He has repeatedly used his media clout to advance public discourse on key environmental issues, including Earth Matters, a weekly environmental program on CNN. He also runs the Turner Foundation (www.turnerfoundation.org), which sponsors and promotes environmental preservation and energy efficiency activities and organizations.

"Ted Turner and the other award winners exemplify the notion that we are all accountable for our planet’s environmental future," says Alliance to Save Energy President David M. Nemtzow.

The Whirlpool Corporation, the world’s leading manufacturer of major home appliances (www.whirlpool.com), has become the industry standard-bearer for environmental responsibility in its operations and product lines. Whirlpool produces super-efficient refrigerators that are free of ozone-eating CFCs and outperform U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) efficiency standards by up to 30 percent. Whirlpool’s newest development is the Resource SaverTM vertical axis clothes washer, which uses less than half the energy of conventional washers and is the first and only top-loading vertical axis washing machine to receive the Energy Star designation.

"Good corporate citizenship is smart business," observes Whirlpool North American Region Executive Vice President Mike Thieneman. "Whirlpool’s innovations are not only environmentally sound, but they also help us maintain our leadership position in the appliance industry."

Widely acclaimed for the innovative, "green" design in its award-winning Four Times Square building in the heart of New York City, the Durst Organization Inc. is also being honored as a Star of Energy Efficiency. "As we designed this building," explains Douglas Durst, President of the Durst Organization, "we recognized that it was imperative that we apply the lessons learned from the past to ensure that we created a workplace that benefits not only our tenants but the broader community as well."

The $500 million, 48-story commercial office tower is the largest environmentally responsible office building not only in New York City, but also in the world. It embraces stringent standards for energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and sustainable materials use. NAIMA, a trade association representing insulation manufacturers (www.naima.org), will receive the Chairman’s Award from Alliance Chairman Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) for its outstanding support and promotion of energy efficiency over the years. "NAIMA has been on the front lines of energy efficiency battles for years," notes Senator Bingaman. "Because of its work, more people than ever are taking advantage of energy efficiency as the key to greater prosperity and a cleaner environment."

"We are honored to be in such esteemed company with the leaders in energy efficiency," says Ken Mentzer, executive vice president of NAIMA, "and we will keep working to make energy efficiency the standard in our homes, businesses, and industry." NAIMA has most recently thrown its weight behind a tax credit proposal for energy-efficient homes currently being debated in Congress. Kirk Watson, the mayor of Austin, Texas, who has demonstrated innovative leadership on energy efficiency and the environment during his term, will serve as co-chair of the "Evening with the Stars," at the Atrium of the International Trade Center at the Ronald Reagan Building.