STORE SPACES

RILA report highlights retail sustainability leadership and innovation

BY Marianne Wilson

Washington, D.C. — The Retail Industry Leaders Association has released its first report on sustainability practices among some of its retail members. The 2012 Retail Sustainability Report highlights sustainability leadership in the retail industry and highlights company examples to highlight the innovative work of the industry and illustrate what it can anticipate over the coming years.

The report also emphasizes the important role of other stakeholders – be it landlords, municipalities, product manufacturers, transportation providers, or customers – in the sustainability journey and how various groups can work together to achieve common goals.

Key retail sustainability trends identified in the report include: working across sectors to achieve sustainability goals, turning from sustainability as a cost and risk reduction measure to an opportunity for business growth, developing systems for continuous improvement, and fostering transparency in operations and in the supply chain.

“I think one of the biggest takeaways from the report is that creating lasting change in retail sustainability is not something the industry can do alone,” said Adam Siegel, RILA VP sustainability and retail operations, continued Siegel. “Retailers are reaching out to nonprofits, academics, and governments as well as to their suppliers, consumers, investors, and communities to provide their diverse perspectives and partnerships and help accelerate sustainable innovation for all.”

The report offered four predictions on the growth of sustainability within the industry and said that in five to 10 years:

  • Sustainability will become integrated into the business;
  • The drive to manage supply chain impacts will transform retailer-supplier relationships;
  • Industry collaboration will become the standard;
  • Business models will evolve as consumption habits change;
  • The report identified four key trends and found that leading retailers are;
  • Working with stakeholders across sectors to achieve sustainability goals;
  • Turning from sustainability as a cost and risk reduction measure to an opportunity for business growth;
  • Developing systems for continuous improvement by pulling together controls, measurement and management tools and IT systems;
  • Fostering transparency in operations and in the supply chain.

The report is available at rila.org.

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STORE SPACES

Leadership Workshop to kick off SPECS 2012

BY Staff Writer

New York City — A special Leadership Workshop on negotiating techniques will kick off Chain Store Age’s 48th annual SPECS (store planning, equipment, construction and facilities seminars) Conference. The industry’s leading retail store development event, SPECS will be held March 4 – 7, 2012, at the Gaylord Palms Resort in Kissimmee, Fla.

Designed to help attendees improve their negotiating skills, the Leadership Workshop will be held on Sunday, March, 4, and attendance is limited. For more information on SPECS, and to register for the event and leadership workshop, click here.

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Ikea completes solar installation at Cincinnati-area store

BY Katherine Boccaccio

West Chester, Ohio — Ikea said Tuesday that it has officially plugged-in the solar energy system installed at its Cincinnati-area store in West Chester, Ohio.

The 128,000-sq.-ft. PV array consists of a 1,026-kW system, built with 4,186 panels. Ikea West Chester’s program will produce approximately 1,334,300 kWh of clean electricity annually, the equivalent of reducing 1,014 tons of carbon dioxide, eliminating the emissions of 180 cars or powering 115 homes yearly.

Ikea owns and operates each of its solar PV energy systems atop its buildings – as opposed to a solar lease or power purchase agreement – and the West Chester installation represents the 14th completed solar energy project for Ikea in the United States, with 23 more locations underway, making the eventual U.S. solar presence of Ikea nearly 85% and a total generation of 30.8 MW.

For the development, design and installation of the West Chester store’s customized solar power system, Ikea contracted with REC Solar.

The 344,000-sq.-ft. West Chester Ikea store opened in March 2008.

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