Ikea goes solar in Emeryville, Calif.
Emeryville, Calif. — Ikea officially plugged-in the solar energy system installed at its East Bay store in Emeryville, Calif. The 68,000-sq.-ft. photovoltaic array consists of a 538-kW system, built with approximately 2,394 panels.
The installation will produce approximately 760,300 kWh of clean electricity annually, the equivalent of reducing 578 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2), eliminating the emissions of 103 cars or powering 64 homes yearly.
The investment by Ikea to purchase its solar photovoltaic energy system, and to install and operate it atop the Emeryville store it owns, will lower the carbon intensity of the electrical grid. It represents the 11th completed solar energy project for Ikea in the United States. Additional installations currently are underway at one other Ikea location in California as well as eight more in the Eastern U.S.
For the development, design and installation of this customized solar power system, Ikea contracted with Gloria Solar, the U.S. operating group focused on the photovoltaic business within the family of E-Ton Solar Group. This project is the third Ikea installation in the 70,000-square-mile service area of PG&E.
Walmart to launch global e-commerce empowerment solution for women
New York City — Walmart plans to launch a dedicated page on Walmart.com that will feature an assortment of products created by women in nearly two dozen countries, including women who work in cooperatives and own small businesses. Scheduled to be available in spring 2012, products will include jewelry from Guatemala, Thailand and Ethiopia; coffee from Central and South America; and dresses from Kenya.
The news builds on the goals that the chain announced last week around global women’s economic empowerment. By 2016, the dedicated e-commerce site will feature approximately 500 items – from apparel and jewelry, to stationery and accessories – by more than 20,000 women in nearly two dozen countries.
“The challenge for small women-owned businesses – and particularly women artisans – is that they have a fantastic product, but they may not have the size or scale to sell in our brick-and-mortar stores," Leslie Dach, Walmart’s executive VP corporate affairs, said at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting in New York City. "This commitment today gives these women access to an established set of customers on Walmart.com, as well as the benefit of the company’s knowledge about customers, packaging and promotions."
Gap’s PACE program honored at Clinton Global Initiative
New York City — Gap’s Personal Advancement and Career Enhancement program was recognized by former President Bill Clinton at the Clinton Global Initiative, held in New York City. Bob Fisher, son of Gap founders Doris and Don Fisher and a Gap board member, accepted the honor on behalf of the company.
“Education of female garment workers is a distinct way our company can support positive, lasting benefits for workers and their communities. Our deep knowledge of the apparel world, our partnerships with manufacturing vendors and local NGOs have allowed us to help make meaningful impact on the lives of thousands of women,” said Gap chairman and CEO, Glenn Murphy.
Launched in 2007, Gap’s P.A.C.E. program creates opportunities for women to advance in their careers and personal lives. P.A.C.E. was designed and developed in partnership with Swasti Health Resources and the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW). CARE International is a key implementing partner. Gap’s vendor partners also play a critical role. One of these vendors in India that employs more than 60,000 workers has committed to extending P.A.C.E. to all workers by the year 2020. To date, more than 7,500 female garment workers have participated in the program.