Irving, Texas-based convenience retailer 7-Eleven has signed an agreement with retail electric provider TXU Energy to purchase 100 percent Texas wind energy to power all of its stores located in the Lone Star State’s deregulated markets.
The eight-year wind energy agreement, announced on April 3, which impacts 425 of 7-Elevens 11,000 U.S. stores, starts on June 1, 2018 – and is expected to reduce the retailer’s carbon footprint by 6.7 percent, while providing significant operating expense savings.
Under the terms of the agreement, the energy to power the stores will be provided by Texas wind farms. With more than 10,000 wind turbines in the state, Texas ranks first in the United States for both installed and under-construction wind capacity, and is home to four of the top 10 largest wind farms in the nation.
“This agreement is beneficial for 7-Eleven on several fronts,” said Ben Tison, SVP of Development. “Wind energy is a renewable, more cost-effective resource that will lower the carbon footprint of these stores, as well as operating costs.
“Our customers, particularly Millennials and the younger Generation Z,” Tison said, “care about sustainability and reducing environmental impacts, and they’re paying attention to what companies are doing.”
In 2016, 7-Eleven outlined steps to reach measurable corporate social responsibility (CSR) goals to reduce its environmental footprint. The retailer’s CSR mission has three focus areas – people, planet and products. Using 2015 as a baseline, 7-Eleven set goals to reduce its carbon footprint and increase community engagement in the U.S. and Canada by concentrating on energy, packaging, and philanthropy.
The “planet pillar” included reducing its energy footprint in stores and at its store support center in Irving, Texas, by 20 percent by 2025. 7-Eleven has already decreased electricity use in store operations by an estimated 21 percent over the past seven years through projects including installation of LED lighting, energy management systems, and high-efficiency HVAC units.
TXU Energy will help 7-Eleven save even more by providing energy efficiency rebate incentives through its TXU GreenBack program. These incentives will allow 7-Eleven to fund and pilot new energy efficient technologies that can be used throughout its portfolio of facilities.