On Spec

Safeway Honored for Energy Efforts

Safeway has been recognized as a leader in responsible energy use by California’s energy-efficiency campaign, Flex Your Power. The Pleasanton, Calif.-based supermarket chain has achieved dramatic energy savings through several programs, including its “Power to Save” initiative, which saves 18.6 million kilowatt-hours (kwh) annually. Other savings stem from lighting retrofits, energy-management controls and refrigeration updates. In all, Safeway is saving more than 98 million kwh of electricity annually, significantly reducing its power bills and cutting carbon-dioxide emissions by almost 100 million lbs.

In addition, Safeway is currently developing approximately 24 solar projects across the state of California. The chain expects to have eight to 12 solar projects completed by yearend.

Safeway is the first and only retailer to join both the Chicago Climate Exchange—North America’s only voluntary, legally binding greenhouse-gas emissions-reduction registry and trading program—and the California Climate Action Registry, the state’s official registry for greenhouse-gas reduction projects.

Fresh & Easy Sets Ambitious Recycling Agenda

Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market, Tesco’s U.S. retail division, is partnering with Resource Management Group (RMG), San Diego, to design a state-of-the-art recycling and waste-reduction program that will significantly reduce the amount of waste leaving its stores and distribution center (DC).

The program is set up to create accountability and flexibility in regard to reducing and recycling waste. As part of the effort, Fresh & Easy will recycle or reuse all of its display and shipping materials.

In addition, all display-ready packaging—one of each store’s largest waste streams—will be sent back to the DC, where it will be sorted and either recycled or cleaned and reused, thereby diverting a substantial amount of waste from the landfill.

The waste program is one of many environmental initiatives launched by Fresh & Easy, set to open in November with locations in Southern California, Nevada and Arizona. The retailer has joined LEED’s (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) volume-certification pilot program, which streamlines the certification process for companies building multiple but similar facilities.

Fresh & Easy estimates its buildings will reduce energy output by approximately 30% compared to a typical grocery store. Specific green features include:

Night shades on refrigeration cases to keep cool air from escaping;

Secondary-loop system on refrigeration cases designed to capture and reuse cool air;

LED lighting in external signage and freezer cases;

Increased insulation, reducing need for HVAC; and

Skylights on new buildings with overhead lighting that dims automatically.

BJ’s in Solar-Power Partnership

Solar photovoltaic (PV) systems have been installed on the rooftops of two BJ’s Wholesale Club locations in Connecticut, in the towns of Derby and Willimantic. The systems are expected to generate a total of approximately 180,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity annually, and also result in a combined reduction in CO2 emissions to approximately 86 tons per year.

The two solar arrays are the largest solar PV installations at retail sites in the state. The installations were made possible, in part, by a grant from the Connecticut Clean Energy Fund. The system developer and owner, Conservation Services Group (CSG), Westborough, Mass, is financing the balance of the system cost.

During the past eight years, CSG and BJ’s have partnered on 14 PV installations throughout the Northeast. CSG manages the operation of the systems and sells the clean power back to BJ’s.

ASHRAE Seeks to Increase Efficiency

ASHRAE (American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers) is committed to increasing building energy efficiency in Standard 90.1. The organization is looking to achieve 30% energy savings in the 2010 standard compared to ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2004.

Any changes to Standard 90.1 will follow ASHRAE’s standards development process, which is approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and based on achieving consensus.