By David Ozment – Green power really is the future. That’s why we are investing in solar, wind and fuel cells – especially in California and Texas where renewables provide nearly 30 percent of electricity for many of our stores.
And today, we have news: The Environmental Protection Agency has put us at the top of its Green Power Partnership lists, including naming us the No. 2 generator of on-site green
power in California and Texas. You may not know it, but many of our store roofs out west are blanketed with solar panels. By the end of next year, we will have 130 solar-powered stores in California, providing up to one-third of electrical needs for a typical Walmart.
It was just seven years ago that Walmart set a big goal: to eventually be supplied 100 percent by renewable energy. No retailer had ever done something like this on such a huge scale. We gathered around a table and started trying to create a model: how do we do this? How do we make this work?
We experimented and tested and learned to be flexible depending on the circumstances. We procured clean-wind energy from a large wind farm in Texas, installed micro-wind turbines
in Massachusetts and fuel cells in California. We learned that you go in without really knowing all the answers, but doors begin to open with each success.
We got our feet on the ground with solar in California and Hawaii, and discovered what we had to do. This opened the door to solar in Arizona, which opened the door to solar in Louisiana and now New Jersey – and over the coming months, more states.
There is pressure to get to 100 percent renewable energy tomorrow, but this is a journey. We have to do it efficiently and cost effectively if we are to accomplish our goal of providing renewable energy at prices that are at – or below – utility rates, and ultimately make renewable energy more affordable for everyone. Continue reading more…