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LED Retrofit the Latest Energy Efficiency Measure at Walmart Canada

December 11, 2012 By Linda Hardesty

Walmart Canada has retrofitted all of the overhead sales floor lighting at its Brampton North store in Brampton, Ontario, from conventional fluorescent lighting to high efficiency LED 4-foot retrofit lamps.

The retailer estimates this small change could save approximately 283,000 kWh per year, which will result in a savings of up to $26,000 per year.

Completed by Canadian EcoLight LED Systems, the retrofit involved changing close to 6,000 lamps from traditional 25-watt fluorescent high efficiency lamps to 18-watt LED lights, allowing the retailer to reduce energy usage for store lighting by 28 percent. In addition to the direct savings from switching to LED lamps, the retailer will also benefit from reduced costs for relamping, reballasting and recycling. And because LED lights emit less heat than fluorescent lights, Walmart will reduce its air conditioning use at the store during the spring and summer.

Other facts about energy efficiency at Walmart Canada, which operates more than 370 stores, employing 90,000 Canadians:

The company operates an annual reduced summer lighting program in nearly all of its stores nationwide. In 2012, by reducing its sales floor lighting by one-third, summer-long, the company saved $1.5 million by avoiding an estimated 18.9 million kWh of energy consumption.

In addition to reducing its lighting during the summer months, Walmart Canada has changed nearly all of its 1.75 million 32-watt lamps to lower wattage 25-watt lamps as replacements are needed. In 2009, the company began rolling out prototypical stores across Canada that are at least 30 percent more energy-efficient than previous store prototypes.

Where possible, the company is retrofitting existing stores to be at least 20 percent more energy efficient. This project involves lighting improvements and re-commissioning mechanical systems including heating, air conditioning and refrigeration.

The company recently opened a fresh food distribution center in Balzac, Alberta, which includes wind and solar power, and is piloting geothermal technology at its environmental demonstration store in Burlington, Ontario.

The company also operates a 20-kW wind turbine adjacent to its Milton, Ontario store. The turbine is expected to generate as much as 38,000 to 45,000 kWh of electricity per year based on wind yield. The wind turbine has been designed for low wind speed areas, where wind power has not been previously practical, and can operate in wind speeds as low as 10 kilometers per hour.

The company is piloting a rooftop solar power-generating system estimated to generate over 380,000 kWh of energy per year, on top of its Kitchener-Waterloo store.

Walmart Canada is one of the country’s largest purchasers of renewable energy through Bullfrog Power.


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