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Sainsbury's celebrates solar achievement

Sainsbury's has reached another milestone in its sustainability initiative and has now installed 100,000 photovoltaic solar panels (22mWp) across 210 stores - enough to cover 35 football pitches.
The retailer is continuing to invest in renewable energy as it works to cut its CO2 emissions and lower energy bills. The solar panels will help to reduce its total CO2 emissions by an estimated 9,785 tonnes per year. Sainsbury's is currently the largest multi-roof solar panel operator in Europe.

Energy and Climate Change Minister, Greg Barker, welcomed the news on 25 July as he visited a Sainsbury's store at London Colney in St Albans, where he officially launched the retailer's 12th Ground Source Heat Pump. The heat pump provides energy efficient heating, hot water and cooling for the store.

Paul Crewe, Sainsbury's head of engineering, sustainability, energy and environment said: 'We've achieved a 9.1% absolute reduction in electricity use over the past four years in our supermarkets, despite a 25% increase in space, and we're really seeing the benefits from using our under-utilised space for solar panels, and from the other renewable technologies we've installed.'

The installation of ground source heat pumps at 12 stores follows the company's successful 'world-first' use of the geo-thermal technology at its Crayford store, which enabled it to supply 30 per cent of its energy from on-site renewable sources. In addition, it has installed 74 biomass boilers since 2008, using wood to heat stores.

Sainsbury's investment in onsite renewable energy technologies is part of its ambitious sustainability target to reduce its operational carbon emissions by 30% absolute (and 65% relative) by 2020 compared with 2005. This is part of a wider target of an absolute carbon reduction of 50% by 2030.



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31 July 2013

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