Safeway Sold on Solar


Photo credit: axis

North America's second-largest supermarket chain has embraced the power of the sun by installing a solar-panel array atop a newly renovated Safeway Lifestyle store in Dublin, California.

The solar equipment will generate approximately 7,500 megawatt hours of electricity per year—enough to provide 20 percent of the 55,000-square-foot retail facility's average power usage and up to 48 percent of its power during peak daylight hours. The store's on-site retail fuel station is already powered by wind energy.

Safeway says it plans to extend the program to nearly two dozen stores as part of a "broader renewable energy initiative."By using solar energy at the Dublin store, the retailer says it is removing 487,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from the air, or the equivalent of taking 50 passenger cars off the road annually. The entire 23-store solar program, it says, will remove 10.4 million pounds of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, which will be equal to taking 1,000 cars off the road per year.

"Safeway is taking its green power initiative to the next level as we identify additional California store locations for its solar stores program," says Joe Pettus, Safeway's senior vice president, Fuel & Energy, in a press release. "The investment in renewable energy, both solar and wind makes sense for both the environment and our company."

In 2005, the company transitioned all of its 295 U.S. fuel stations to 100 percent renewable wind energy, making Safeway the largest retail purchaser of green wind energy in California, according the the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

See also: ::Safeway Switching Truck Fleet to Biodiesel in Arizona and ::Safeway Agrees to Remove Carbon Monoxide Treated Meat

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