Red Lobster location awarded LEED Silver certification
Orlando, Fla. Darden Restaurants, owner of Red Lobster and Olive Garden banners among others, said Monday that its Red Lobster restaurant in Centerview, San Antonio, is one of the company’s first to receive sustainability recognition.
The restaurant was awarded Silver certification for LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for New Construction from the U.S. Green Building Council.
The 7,029-sq.-ft. restaurant, which opened in March, features a number of sustainable design elements, including recycled building materials, increased use of natural light, and energy-efficient equipment and fixtures, including low-flow water nozzles in the kitchen and low-flow faucets in the restrooms, new LED parking lot light bulbs and low-wattage energy-efficient light bulbs, and heat recovery tanks that allow the capture of heat generated from the freezer/cooler compressors to aid in supplemental heating of hot water.
The effort is part of Darden Restaurant’s Sustainable Restaurant Design initiative, which aims to reduce energy and water use in 1,800 restaurants by 15% by the year 2015.
Red Lobster, part of Darden Restaurants has nearly 700 locations across North America. Darden restaurant brands also include Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze and Seasons 52.
Warwick, N.Y. Price Chopper earns GreenChill award
Schenectady, N.Y. The Price Chopper Supermarket located in Warwick, N.Y., has been awarded the Environmental Protection Agency’s GreenChill ‘Silver-Level Certification’ award for streamlining/reducing the use of refrigerants in its continuing efforts of environmental stewardship.
“As part of our overall environmental strategy, we have made a commitment to reduce refrigerant emissions that in turn reduce greenhouse gases,” said Bill Sweet, Price Chopper’s VP, engineering and construction, Price Chopper, which operates more than 100 supermarkets and is owned and operated by the Golub Corp.
GreenChill is a voluntary program designed to reduce the use of ozone-depleting refrigerants in grocery stores across the county. The GreenChill Store Certification Awards Program recognizes retail stores that achieve at least a 50% reduction in refrigerant charge and a 75% reduction in refrigerant emissions.
In 2009, the Price Chopper Supermarket located in Colonie, N.Y., was awarded the EPA’s GreenChill ‘Best of the Best – Best GreenChill Certified Store – 2008-2009,’ the highest level of GreenChill gold-level certification ever achieved by a supermarket retailer.
The store uses the most environmentally friendly refrigeration system; it runs on just 282 pounds of refrigerant in total (just ? pound of refrigerant per 1000 BTUs per hour) and its refrigerant leak rate is predicted to be less than 1% throughout the life of the equipment.
Reduced energy use key to Best Buy’s sustainability efforts
New York Best Buy reduced greenhouse gas emissions in its U.S. store operations by 14.8% in fiscal 2010, compared with its 2005 baseline, according to the company’s 2010 Sustainability Report. In total, the chain said it had reduced carbon emissions by 162,155 metric tonnes below its 2005 baseline. Its original goal was an 8% reduction in carbon intensity per square foot by 2012.
A key factor driving emissions trends is energy use, which Best Buy managed to hold steady despite increasing its retail square footage by 5%. The chain increased its use of virtual servers, allowing the number of physical servers it uses to remain almost flat despite an increase in stores and locations. The retailer is also working with Xcel Energy to test the effects of increasing the temperature of its data rooms in order to further reduce energy use.
Best Buy said it also plans to invest in a centralized, ultrasonic humidification system, which it said with both save energy and provide a return on investment within a year. The company will also focus on reducing fleet fuel use, tighter operational controls, reduced plug loads, and carbon offsets or renewable energy credits.