Seattle -- REI has committed to having all of its electricity from renewable sources. The retailer already has 26 solar electric systems generating clean power and a program designed to invest in energy efficiency. Now, REI is buying certified renewable energy certificates (RECs) as part of its strategy to green the energy that powers more than 130 stores, two distribution centers and its headquarters.
“We are encouraged that our overall energy use has been essentially flat in recent years, while we have grown significantly and connected more members and customers to the outdoors,” said Kirk Myers, corporate social responsibility manager at REI. “We intend to generate enough local renewable energy for our total electricity needs, but until then, RECs will be an important part of our energy strategy.”
REI purchases RECs from San Francisco-based 3Degrees, a leading provider of renewable energy marketing services, RECs, and carbon offsets. Demand created by 3Degrees and its partners supports hundreds of renewable energy projects that range from large-scale wind farms to innovative independent energy makers.
REI is committed to addressing its operational impact, which includes energy reduction. Its energy strategy is composed of increased efficiencies such as lighting retrofit projects, solar generation and renewable energy. Since 2006, REI has purchased some of its electricity from utility-provided green power that meets rigorous procurement criteria. While the company grew nearly 6% in 2013 over 2012, REI increased its energy consumption by just 0.1% and reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by 39.5%.