May 8, 2018 Read More →

Target Says Onsite Solar Is Smart Business


Target, Amazon, Apple and other corporations are installing more solar panels onsite than ever to save money on their power bills and meet their sustainability goals. Large U.S. corporations installed 326 megawatts of solar panels in 2017, up 2 percent from 2016, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Target completed more than 43 megawatts of solar-panel installations last year, by far the most that any other company installed in 2017. The giant retailer has panels installed at 425 locations and aims to install panels at 75 more, to reach its goal of generating solar power at 500 buildings by 2020. Target stores that have panels use the power they generate for between 15 percent and 30 percent of the electricity the stores consume, said Target spokesman Lee Henderson.

“It saves us money, it saves us energy and it does good by the local communities,” he said. “We’re really focused on the planet and wanting to do things today that will ensure that we’re around tomorrow, for the business and for the planet.”

Amazon, which ranked third for 2017 corporate solar installations, added 17.5 megawatts of on-site solar in 2017, toward its goal to install at least 50 solar systems on the rooftops of the company’s fulfillment and sortation centers by 2020.

More companies are installing batteries and panels together, particularly in California and Hawaii, as a way to save on their power bills and respond to local regulations.

“Storage has become a necessity in Hawaii,” said Nam Nguyen, executive vice president of commercial solar at SunPower, which installed a 910-kilowatt solar system and a 250-kilowatt pack of batteries at Target’s store in Kona, on Hawaii’s Big Island, among other projects.

More: Why Target and Amazon Like Onsite Solar Power

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