The world’s biggest retailer chain, Walmart continues to see the value in solar. The company already is leading the nation in terms of overall solar installed, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), and with 12 new installations completed at Walmart and Sam’s Club locations throughout Ohio, it seems poised to retain that title.
On March 4 the company said it worked with SolarCity to install solar panels on 12 Walmart stores and Sam’s Clubs throughout Ohio. Each array will provide between 5 percent and 20 percent of each store’s overall electricity use, according to the Walmart. Its solar locations in Ohio now include locations in Mason, Xenia, Greenville, Austintown, Middletown, Franklin, Youngstown, Toledo, Milford, Loveland, and two systems in Cincinnati.
“Solar power makes sense for Walmart, and it makes sense for Ohio,” said David Ozment, Walmart Senior Director of Energy. “We are committed to increasing the use of renewable energy resources, including solar panels, at our stores in Ohio and throughout the country.” Indeed, the company had installed 100 PV arrays on stores in California alone by July 2012 and by November of 2012 installed systems on 144 locations across seven states in the U.S., according to SEIA.
In fact Walmart’s installations in Ohio make up a significant portion of all solar installed in the Buckeye state. “At more than four and a half megawatts, it represents almost a tenth of all the solar installed in Ohio currently,” said Green Energy Ohio Executive Director Bill Spratley. “It is exciting to see that Walmart's solar arrays will also eliminate 5,500 tons of CO2e or the equivalent of taking the emissions of 1,152 cars off the road each year.”
The project also builds on SolarCity’s partnership with Walmart and allowed it to build a presence in Ohio. “This project brings SolarCity to the state of Ohio for the first time,” said SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive.
Walmart is planning on building out more solar and sourcing all of its energy from renewable resources, like solar. And by at least two measures, “Top 20 Commercial Solar Users in the U.S. Includes Iconic American Brands” and the EPA Green Power Partnership program, both of which rank Walmart as topping the lists in terms of renewable energy.