Fresh & Easy strikes LEED Gold

New York City Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market, the U.S. division of U.K. grocery giant Tesco, on Thursday will open its first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)-certified store, in Cathedral City, Calif.

The store has been given LEED Gold certification, according to reports.

The store achieved LEED certification for energy use, lighting, water use and incorporating a variety of other sustainable strategies, such as using 90% recycled steel for the building’s structure.

On average, Fresh & Easy stores use 30% less energy than a typical supermarket and utilize such technologies as solar tracking skylights, automatically dimming lights, and LED lighting.

“Achieving LEED Gold certification for our Cathedral City store further demonstrates our commitment to the environment and sustainable consumption,” said Tim Mason, CEO, Fresh & Easy, which has 127 stores in Southern California, Arizona and Nevada, and 71 stores in Southern California.

“Designing our buildings to use less energy is win-win: We are able to use less money, which we can pass onto customers and we have less of an impact on the earth.”

In addition, Fresh & Easy recycles or reuses all its shipping and display materials and uses environmentally friendly trailers to transport food. The company is a pilot member of the LEED Volume Certification Program and has invested in a 500,000-sq.-ft. solar roof installation on its distribution center in Riverside, Calif.

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