Thursday, April 18, 2024

Woolworths installs solar in Orange

Woolworths in Orange, NSW is the latest supermarket to have solar panels installed to reduce the store’s environmental footprint and cut energy costs.

Shaped like the retailer’s logo, the 100kW solar system is made up of 357 “high efficiency” solar panels spanning around 1,000sqm. The Orange store is one of more than 140 Woolworths Group sites now generating energy from solar power across Australia.

The solar system, according to Woolworths, has the capacity to generate more than 150 megawatt hours of electricity each year, which is said to be the equivalent to more than 23 Australian households’ annual energy consumption. This will help offset approximately eight per cent of the store’s energy consumption.

“From store lighting and air-conditioning to food refrigeration and preparation, there is no doubt supermarkets are energy intensive to run,” says Woolworths Orange Store Manager Rae-Anne Ross.

“In recent years we’ve been working to run our stores more sustainably, and energy use is a big part of the effort.

“We’re investing in more efficient refrigeration and lighting systems and harnessing the power of renewables across the network too.

“At Woolworths Orange, we’re pleased to be doing our bit for the planet with this solar installation.

“It will not only reduce the store’s environmental footprint, but also help keep costs down so we can continue offering the best possible prices to our customers.”

The bigger picture

Woolworths claims that its supermarkets generate more than 15,000 megawatt hours of electricity through solar panels annually. This is said to be the equivalent of 2,300 households’ annual energy consumption.

A third of Woolworths supermarkets also now have hybrid or HCF-free refrigeration systems. In addition, more than 800 supermarkets have energy efficient LED lighting, which reduces energy consumption in a store by around 10-15 percent. These upgrades to lighting in supermarkets alone, says Woolworths, have offset the equivalent power consumption of 50 stores.

In total, the retailer says its sustainability investments have helped deliver an 18 per cent reduction in carbon emissions on 2015 levels.

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