Sears earns EPA National Building Competition awards
Susan Andrews -- Home Textiles Today, October 27, 2010
Hoffman Estates, Ill. - Sears Holdings Corporation's Glen Burnie, Md.-based store earned second place in the U.S Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) first-ever National Building Competition.
This competition challenged teams from 14 buildings across the country to measure their energy use and work off the waste with help from the EPA's Energy Star program.
The Glen Burnie store team accomplished several achievements:
A 31.7% reduction in energy use, which is comparable to the electricity used in 33 homes for a year;
$45,612 in savings on the store's energy bills, creating enough money to buy 61 Energy Star Kenmore Elite high-efficiency top load washers;
And reduced the carbon footprint of the store by more than 272 metric tons of carbon dioxide, which is equal to taking 52 cars off the road for a year.
Additionally, the Glen Burnie Sears reduced its energy consumption through numerous energy efficiency initiatives including, but not limited to: an interior lighting retrofit of the entire store that called for replacing inefficient 4 lamp 30w light fixtures with energy efficient 2 lamp 32w light fixtures, thus reducing consumption and realizing higher light output to brighten the store for its associates and customers; the use of modified level lighting during maintenance crew cleaning times by rebalancing the light to the proper levels; and the replacement of worn or missing weather-stripping to stop air-infiltration and making necessary HVAC repairs on equipment not operating at peak performance as well as correcting poorly positioned interior zone temperature sensors to more accurately heat and cool the store.
Finally, "and most importantly," Sears said, its Glen Burnie store management and associate teams executed store disciplines for conserving energy "as if the store were their own home by keeping doors closed when the air conditioning or heat was on and turned off lights when they were not in use."
"We are extremely proud of the Glen Burnie team, but this is just one example of our many sustainability initiatives," said Bruce Johnson, Sears interim president and ceo.
The EPA said its competition's 14 winners - which includes JCPenney's Orange, Calif. Store in third place -- collectively reduced their energy use by 44 million kBtu, saving more than $950,000 in utility bills, and reduced carbon dioxide emissions equal to the electricity use of nearly 600 homes for a year. The National Building Competition measured energy reductions from September 1, 2009 through August 31, 2010. The energy use of each building was monitored through EPA's Energy Star online energy measurement and tracking tool, Portfolio Manager.
"EPA is pleased to recognize the Glen Burnie Sears store for their achievements in working off the energy waste as part of the National Building Competition," said Maura Beard, communications director for the commercial buildings branch of the EPA's Energy Star program. "All 14 teams are outstanding examples of how energy efficiency is good business and helps Americans fight climate change while saving money on their energy bills."
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