Retailers Increase Energy Independence

Swedish retailer IKEA has some pretty impressive goals, including total energy independence by the year 2020. It’s answer? Wind and solar power to meet all it’s stores’ needs in a decade. In addition to installing solar panels and building wind farms, it will cut energy usage by installing LED light bulbs in place of the 1.2 million incandescent bulbs it now uses around the world. IKEA already has placed solar panels atop all but four of its 38 distribution and retail centers in the U.S.

Steve Howard, IKA Group’s chief sustainability officer, told USA Today, “Each roof is a power station in the making,” says Steve Howard, Ikea Group’s chief sustainability officer, adding that the United States has “fantastic sun … as good as anywhere in the world.” Ikea already has solar panels atop 34 of its 38 U.S. stores and distribution centers.

To encourage its customers to be equally environmentally friendly, Ikea recently announced that it will cease selling incandescent bulbs by 2016, making only LED alternatives in its stores worldwide.

Not surprisingly, Ikea is near the top of the list of environmentally friendly companies doing business in the U.S. According to a survey release by the Solar Energy Industries Association in October, the top U.S. companies in terms of solar power generation are, in order: Walmart, Costco, Kohls, Ikea, and Macy’s.

For info: environmental news