Retail News Breaks
Walgreens pushes ahead with solar energy rollout
June 19th, 2013
DEERFIELD, Ill. – Walgreen Co. plans to build more than 200 new solar installations at its drug stores in California, Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York.
Walgreens said Wednesday that the solar energy rollout, done in tandem with Chicago-based solar developer SoCore Energy, will bring the number of completed solar installations at Walgreens stores to more than 350, making the company the leading retailer in the number of solar-powered stores.
"We are committed to reducing our carbon footprint and leading the retail industry in use of green technology," Thomas Connolly, vice president of facilities development at Walgreens, said in a statement. "Because we operate more than 8,000 stores, we believe our implementation of sustainable energy technology can have a significant positive impact on the nation's environment while also creating jobs."
The deployment will produce an estimated 13.5 million kilowatt hours annually, the equivalent of offsetting the CO2 emissions from the electricity use of more than 1,400 homes for one year, according to Walgreens. Included in the rollout is the Walgreens net-zero energy store in Evanston, Ill., which will feature more than 850 rooftop solar panels.
Walgreens said it will host the solar arrays, while SoCore Energy will own, operate and maintain them. The drug chain noted that this model has worked well for the two Illinois-based companies since 2011, when they collaborated on a 53-store rollout across the state of Ohio.
"SoCore is proud to be developing one of the most important and sizable distributed solar platforms ever constructed in the United States," stated Pete Kadens, president and chief executive officer of SoCore Energy. "After we are done here, Walgreens will have more solar locations than any other company in the U.S. This is a remarkable accomplishment for both Walgreens and the team at SoCore."
Through the U.S. Department of Energy's Better Buildings Challenge, Walgreens has committed to a chainwide 20% energy reduction by 2020.
"Taking care of our environment is another way Walgreens can help people get, stay and live well in the communities we serve," commented Menno Enters, Walgreens' director of energy and sustainability. "Walgreens will continue to strive for leadership in sustainability to create a happier, healthier environment for our customers and the communities we serve."
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