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Major Companies Enhance Commitment to Solar in 2013
A growing number of major corporations with operations around the world are harnessing energy from the sun to save on electricity bills. The Solar Energy Industries Association and Vote Solar recently released data showing some of the most iconic brands have gone solar in 2013.
These companies, which include names like Walmart and Costco, have installed 1,000 solar energy systems collectively in 30 states and Puerto Rico. About 117 million Americans - one out of every three people - live within 20 miles of at least one of these installations, SEIA reported.
The top 25 companies for solar power in 2013 identified in the report collectively installed 445 megawatts of solar capacity - a 48 percent jump from 2012, SEIA said.
"The list of companies moving to clean, affordable solar energy reads like a 'Who's Who' of the most successful corporations in America," said Rhone Esch, SEIA president and CEO, in a statement. "These iconic brands are leading the way when it comes to efforts to reduce our nation's dangerous dependence on foreign energy sources. They're also helping to create thousands of American jobs, boost the U.S. economy and improve our environment. At the same time, they're reducing operating expenses, which benefits both their customers and shareholders."
Walmart continued to outrank other major commercial businesses this year with its solar power. The company installed 89 megawatts at 215 locations. Costco came in second, installing 47 MW at 78 locations. Kohls was ranked third, installing 44 MW at 140 locations and Apple ranked fourth with 41 MW installed at four locations.
"As we work toward our ambitious goal to be supplied 100 percent by renewable energy, solar energy continues to be an important part of our renewable energy portfolio," said Kim Saylors-Laster, vice president for energy, Walmart. "With our size and scale, Walmart is in a unique position to encourage innovation and accelerate the adoption of cost-effective, clean energy alternatives, including solar power."
Kohl's also responded to its ranking, saying how solar energy contributed to waste reduction and the company's commitment to being an environmentally responsible retailer.
"As one of the largest hosts of solar electricity generation in North America, Kohl's continues to make solar and the use and support of green power key components of our sustainable operations strategy," said Ken Bonning, Kohl's senior executive vice president. "Solar also plays an important role in our goal to achieve carbon neutrality through 2015."
Other Top 10 Companies Are:
- Ikea, installing 35 MW at 39 locations
- Macy's, installing 21 MW at 44 locations
- Johnson & Johnson, installing 17 MW at 16 locations
- McGraw-Hill, installing 14 MW at two locations
- Staples, installing 14 MW at 37 locations
- Campbell's, installing 12 MW at three locations
However, a number of other major companies made the top-25 list for installing the most solar this year. Some of those companies are Bed Bath & Beyond, Kaiser Permanente, Volkswagen, Walgreens, Target and FedEx.
Johnson & Johnson, Kaiser Permanente and Walgreens rounded out the top three companies to install the most solar, respectively, among health and beauty companies.
Among auto manufacturers, Volkswagen took the top spot, installing 9.6 MW, and General Motors and Toyota came in second and third with 6.7 MW and 4.4 MW, respectively.
Campbells, U.S. Foods and Safeway took the top spots among food service companies, with 12.2 MW, 11.3 MW and 7 MW installed, respectively.
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