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IKEA completes 1.21MW rooftop solar array in Columbus

Drawing from its Swedish heritage and respect of nature, IKEA believes it can do good business while minimising environmental impact

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The completed solar panel installation on top of the new Columbus store
The completed solar panel installation on top of the new Columbus store

IKEA has completed installation of a roof-mounted solar panel array at its Columbus store in Ohio, which is thought to be one of the largest in the US state.

 

The 213,000-square-foot solar array comprises a 1.21MW system, built with 3,546 panels, and will produce approximately 1,447,700kWh of electricity annually for the store.

 

According to the Swedish furniture retailer this will result in the reduction of 1,017 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) – equal to the emissions of 215 cars or enough to provide electricity for 150 homes annually.

 

“Completing the solar installation is another exciting and sustainable step in the progress towards opening the future IKEA Columbus,” said David Garcia, store manager. “IKEA strives to create a sustainable life for communities where we operate, and IKEA Columbus is adding to this goal with one of Ohio’s largest rooftop solar arrays.”

 

For the development, design and installation of the new store’s solar power system, IKEA selected REC Solar, a national solar electric design and installation company with more than 550 systems built across the US.

 

This array represents the 46th solar project for IKEA in the US, contributing to its solar presence atop nearly 90 per cent of its locations there. The retailer has a total generation goal of more than 40MW.

 

IKEA owns and operates each of its solar photovoltaic energy systems atop its buildings – as opposed to a solar lease or power purchase agreement (PPA) – and globally has allocated $2.5bn.to invest in renewable energy through 2020.

 

Consistent with its goal of being energy independent by 2020, IKEA has installed more than 700,000 solar panels on buildings across the world and owns approximately 300 wind turbines, including 104 in the US.

 

Other specific US sustainable measures IKEA cites include: recycling waste material; incorporating environmental measures into the actual buildings with energy-efficient HVAC and lighting systems; recycled construction materials; and water-conserving restrooms; and operationally, eliminating plastic bags from the check-out process, and selling only LED bulbs.

 

It has also installed electric vehicle charging stations at 16 stores, with more locations planned, including three units at the future Columbus store.

The 354,000-square-foot IKEA Columbus store is schedule for completion in 2017. Built on 33 acres at the northeastern corner of Interstate-71 and Gemini Place in the Polaris Centres of Commerce it will have 1,200 parking spaces.

 

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