Today Wal-Martannounced they’re going to double their use of solar panel on its ownfacilities. And that could be the way to do it for more commercialplayers in California, according to its Governor.
Within 18 months, Wal-Mart wants to expandtheir sustainable energy efforts by adding solar panels on 10 to 20Wal-Mart facilities in California. That will be in addition to the 18solar arrays that are currently installed with excisting facilities.The supplier of the new solar panels for Wal-Mart is BP Solar.
After the new solar panels are in place the total capacity ofreneweable energy coming from the Wal-Mart facilities will be 32million kilowatt hours per year, reducing carbon dioxide emissions with22,500 metric tons, according to the company.
Wal-Mart said that their facilities equipped with solar panels willget 20 to 30 percent of their electric energy from solar power when thewhole installation has been rolled out.
“Thisproject is all about taking bold action so we can see solar panels oncommercial rooftops all across California while putting people towork,” said Governor Schwarzenegger in a fixed comment. “Today’s actionhelps prove that even in an economic downturn, it is possible to getserious about clean, renewable energy.” (Picture on the right from a press conference webcast this morning)
Wal-Mart always has 24 month perspective in their sustainability efforts (See Wal-Mart seeks green ideas). Projects or ideas with a longer perspective will not be considered, at least not on their Cleantech Accelerator Portal (criticized by Greenlight).
At the same time, their long term goal is to be supplied by 100percent renewable energy, create zero waste and sell sustainableproducts. When in time this is going to happen is not set up, whichmakes it a nice but a somewhat stingless goal.
However, the current solar panel installation will create about 130jobs according to Wal-Mart. After the panels have been installed,Wal-Mart is going to consider expanding the technology to additionalsites.
“Thanks to Governor Schwarzenegger’s leadership, California is anexcellent environment for us to grow our investment in renewable energyand help create more green jobs,” said Kimberly Sentovich, Wal-Mart’sCalifornia regional general manager, in a statement.