STORE SPACES

HEB, Walmart and Denny’s to host electrical vehicle charging stations

BY Marianne Wilson

Austin — H-E-B, Walmart, Sam’s Club and Denny’s are among the companies that will host some 103 electric vehicle charging stations in Austin, Texas., allowing customers to plug in while they shop. The stations are part of Utility Austin Energy’s Plug-In EVerywhere network.

The charging stations are available for use by everyone with an electric vehicle. Austin Energy offers a $25 six-month subscription swipe card for unlimited charging at any network location. Otherwise, a credit card can be used for $2 per hour of charging.

“H-E-B is thrilled to be a part of the Plug-In EVerywhere program and continue to lead the way in green practices by helping to provide electric vehicle charging stations in Austin Energy’s Plug-In EVerywhere network,” said Leslie Sweet, H-E-B director of public affairs. “The Plug-in EVerywhere initiative will further extend H-E-B’s commitment to sustainability by providing charging stations in well-lit, safe locations at our stores that are easily accessible for the community’s use.”

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STORE SPACES

Fresh & Easy adds natural gas vehicles to its fleet

BY Marianne Wilson

El Segundo, Calif. — Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market has added 25 compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles to its distribution fleet as part of a partnership with Ryder System. The new vehicles produce 20% to 30% less emissions than comparable diesel vehicles and are part of the company’s ongoing efforts to reduce emissions.

“By incorporating natural gas vehicles into our fleet, we are helping to reduce emissions even further,” said Fresh & Easy CEO Tim Mason. “When we can also reduce our operating costs through more efficient transportation technologies like natural gas and pass those savings on to our customers.”

Fresh & Easy already has introduced trailers that include a hybrid refrigeration vector unit which minimizes the amount of fuel used to safely cool and transport store products. The trailers also include an automatic refrigeration shut-off when optimum temperature is reached inside the cooling chamber, as well as a complete engine shut-off once parked at the stores.

In addition, at the distribution center, Fresh & Easy has utilized plug-in electrical stand-by technology so no fuel is used to run refrigeration units on parked trailers.

The CNG vehicles were made available through a $38.7 million Ryder/ San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) project that is part of a joint public/private partnership between the U.S. Department of Energy, the California Energy Commission, the Southern California Association of Governments Clean Cities Coalition, and Ryder.

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Lord & Taylor makes EPA green list with wind power plans

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — A Thursday report by Crain’s New York Business said that Lord & Taylor has signed a two-year contract with Green Mountain Energy Co. to provide the department store retailer with 100% of its electricity needs at two stores, including the Fifth Ave. flagship location.

The move has garnered the attention of the Environmental Protection Agency, which places Lord & Taylor, effective August, as No. 17 on the its Green Power Partnership list of Top 20 retailers embracing clean energy.

The Green Mountain contract will provide 13 million kilowatt hours of wind-generated power annually.

"We’re very excited that we are able to implement this cleaner energy and carbon offset solution now," Brendan Hoffman, CEO of Lord & Taylor, told Crain’s. "We are thrilled to incorporate green power as part of our business practices."

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