Sustainability

Bringing solar to Ohio and beyond: More than 200 installations and counting

By  Walmart Green Room March 13, 2013

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There’s an exciting new feature at 12 Walmart and Sam’s Club locations in Ohio: a sunroof.

As of March 4, solar panels are now providing more than 4.7 megawatts of generation capacity to those buildings, creating enough energy to power more than 820 homes.

Roofs keep harmful elements out of our buildings, but more often, our company is using them as a valuable means to welcome the sunshine in. The Buckeye State is Walmart’s most recent area of expansion for solar power, joining more than 240 renewable energy projects in operation and more under development around the world.

And that’s just the latest change. Before Ohio, Walmart expanded its solar projects to the states of Massachusetts and Hawaii, and marked milestones like the 200 th and 100 th installations in the span of about six months. We were also recognized by the EPA Green Power Partnership as the No. 1 user/producer of on-site renewable generation in the U.S. And here’s another encouraging fact: To date, all of our solar systems have been installed under power purchase agreements and have not required any Walmart capital, allowing us to make a decision that’s not only good for our business and environment, but enabling us to pass those savings on to our customers.

With our company operating more than 4,000 Walmart stores and Sam’s Club locations across the United States, we believe we have a responsibility – and an opportunity – to make a difference in those communities. Our environmental efforts are one of the biggest ways we are working to create change, and over the past year, solar has allowed us to make some exciting progress coast to coast.

Like many of our previous solar installations, the new projects in Ohio were completed in partnership with SolarCity. Each is made up of 20,287 panels– enough to cover eleven football fields. They will provide between 10 and 15 percent of each building’s total projected electricity needs, and together, they will generate more than 6 million kilowatt hours of solar electricity statewide during their first full year of production.

Producing the positive – clean energy – is the main objective of these installations, but they also have a large hand in reducing a negative: CO 2. Combined, the 12 new projects in Ohio will eliminate 5,500 tons of CO 2, the equivalent of taking 1,100 cars off the road.

At Walmart, we are honored to now be Ohio’s largest user of solar power, and we continue to push forward daily to broaden the reach of our investments in this technology. We are always looking ahead to our aspirational goal of being supplied 100 percent by renewable energy. Every time we install new solar projects in the communities we serve, we get one step closer.

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