Companies like Google, Apple and Facebook often capture headlines with their clean energy initiatives, but over the last year, Walmart has become an installed solar capacity leader. The company completed its 100th solar installation in the U.S. with dozens more planned in the near future.
Now Walmart is taking it one step further at its Buckeye distribution center in Phoenix, Arizona. This project is now the company’s largest solar install to date: 14,000 solar panels will cover a million square feet of building and parking canopies.
The array will generate enough energy to power 30 percent of the facility’s needs. That’s 5.3 million KW hours of clean energy every year, enough to power 400 American households. In terms of saving CO2 emissions, the system is the equivalent of taking 600 cars off the road.
This is the second solar project Walmart has completed on an Arizona distribution center in a little more than a year. This 2MW+ project combined ground mounted and parking canopy structures at a location in Casa Grande, Arizona.
David Ozment, Senior Director of Walmart Energy, explained the company’s solar initiatives. ”Environmental sustainability is an essential ingredient to us for doing business responsibly and successfully. As the world’s largest retailer, our actions have the potential to save our customers money and help substantially reduce our carbon footprint for generations to come.”
Arizona governor Jan Brewer agrees. ”The fact that Walmart has the vision to recognize the benefits of renewable energy shows great promise for the future of solar in our State.”
The U.S. Solar Market Insight Report ranked Arizona third in solar installations in the United States behind California and New Jersey.