Lululemon will purchase wind energy equivalent to the electricity needs of its operational footprint in North America.
Lululemon Athletica Inc. is on track to achieve its goal of sourcing 100% renewable electricity across its direct operations in North America by 2021.
The athletic apparel retailer and Enel Green Power North America have signed a 15-megawatt virtual power purchase agreement for renewable energy from Enel’s Azure Sky wind project. Through the VPPA, Lululemon will meet its renewable energy goals by aggregating the electricity load across 100% of its 380 company-operated stores, six offices and five distribution centers in North America and purchasing wind energy equivalent to the electricity needs of its operational footprint.
The agreement is Lululemon’s first renewable energy VPPA and underscores the company’s investment in fueling its Impact Agenda. Launched in October 2020, it details the company’s strategy to become a more sustainable and equitable business, and outlines its vision to minimize environmental impact and contribute to a healthier world.
“Lululemon is committed to helping create an apparel industry that is both sustainable and inclusive, and addresses the serious implications of climate change, including working toward a net-zero future and cutting carbon emissions across our value chain,” said Esther Speck, VP sustainable business and impact, Lululemon. “Science clearly shows the urgent need to act now. That’s why, among others, we’ve partnered with Enel Green Power North America to accelerate the transition to renewable energy and reduce our emissions footprint. This agreement is an important milestone on our journey toward cleaner energy and a healthier planet.”
For its operations globally, Lululemon will achieve 100% renewable electricity through renewable energy credits. It also will continue to look for opportunities to support net new renewable energy development in the regions they operate in.
Located west of the Dallas-Fort Worth area in Throckmorton County, Texas, the Azure Sky Wind and Storage project includes a 350 MW wind project paired with approximately 137 MW of battery storage and is expected to be operational in the first half of 2022. The project – consisting of 79 wind turbines – is being constructed in accordance with Enel Green Power’s North America Sustainable Design and Construction model and is expected to generate over 1,300 GWh each year, which will be delivered to the grid and will charge the battery located in the same facility.
The battery storage system will be capable of storing the power generated by the wind turbines, while also providing services to enhance grid flexibility. At around 137 MW, the system will be one of the largest battery storage facilities in the world.
“As increasingly more retailers work to address the circularity of their operations, from product design and manufacturing to packaging and end-of-life, industry leaders like lululemon are also prioritizing renewable energy as a centerpiece of their climate and sustainability efforts,” said Georgios Papadimitriou, head of Enel Green Power in the US and Canada. “The agreement with Lululemon also demonstrates how companies with a distributed operational footprint can leverage solutions like VPPAs to achieve their emissions reduction goals, while also supporting the addition of new renewable energy to the electric grid.”