Walmart to add solar panels to new California stores

Los Angeles – Walmart today -- Earth Day -- announced its plans to expand its solar program here and throughout California with solar panels on 10 to 20 additional Walmart facilities within the next 18 months.

This move, which the company said is part of Walmart’s grander sustainability efforts, is in addition to the 18 solar arrays currently installed at Walmart facilities in the state.

When combined, Walmart's total solar installations are expected to: generate up to 32 million kilowatt hours (kWh) per year of renewable energy, the equivalent of powering more than 2,600 homes (according to research by the Environmental Protection Agency); avoid producing more than 22,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually, which is equivalent to removing more than 4,000 cars off the road (also based on EPA research); and provide 20% to 30% of each location's total electric energy needs.

"Increasing the use of solar energy is the right thing to do for the environment and makes tremendous business sense, especially in these economic conditions," said Kimberly Sentovich, Walmart's California regional general manager.

Added California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger: "All over the state we are harnessing the power of the famous California sun and creating energy that is pollution free. Today's action helps prove that even in an economic downturn, it is possible to get serious about clean, renewable energy."

As construction nears completion on this group of 10 to 20 new sites, Walmart said it plans to evaluate the feasibility of expanding the program to additional sites. The company said it will take into account a variety of factors, including available locations, economic conditions, energy prices, as well as local, state and federal renewable energy policies and programs.

Home & Textiles Today Staff | News & Commentary

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