STORE SPACES

Home Depot in big solar initiative

BY Marianne Wilson

The nation's largest home improvement retailer has found a new use for its store roofs.

The Home Depot is partnering with GE's Current unit and Tesla on a rooftop solar project in 50 stores across five states (California, Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and the District of Colombia.) The initiative will reduce electricity grid demand by an estimated 30% to 35% annually at each location. Under a power purchase agreement, Home Depot will lease its roof space and buy the output from the systems.

The new rooftop solar project is part of the Home Depot's ongoing efforts to utilize 135 megawatts (MW) of alternative and renewable energy by 2020. Other alternative and renewable energy projects include:

Solar farms in Delaware and Massachusetts with a combined annual output of 14.5 million kilowatt hours (kWh);

Fuel cells in use at more than 170 stores and distribution centers that produce roughly 90% of the electricity each store needs to operate; and

The 50 MW Los Mirasoles Wind Farm northeast of McAllen, Texas, announced this January, and The Zopiloapan Wind Farm located in central Mexico, added this June.

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