Swedish home furnishings giant IKEA announced on March 28 that a 1.21-MW solar array, built with 3,546 panels, has been completed atop its future Columbus store, which will open this coming summer. The retailer claims that the system will be among the largest solar rooftops in Ohio, just as is the Cincinnati-area one.
IKEA has pledged to go “all-in” on sustainability – working toward 100 percent renewable energy by 2020. Consistent with that goal, IKEA has installed more than 700,000 solar panels on buildings worldwide, the company claims; and owns approximately 300 wind turbines, including 104 in the United States.
Just this year, the home furnishings company has announced that a solar rooftop at its Midwest distribution center, which currently is under construction in Joliet, Illinois – and is scheduled for completion next fall – will be the largest in the state of Illinois. The distribution center’s 470,545-square-foot solar array will comprise a 2.9- MW system, built with 8,966 panels, and will produce approximately 3.4 million kWh of electricity annually for the facility.
What’s more, as Energy Manager Today reported on March 23, IKEA has added fuel cell technology its first store on the East Coast, in New Haven, Connecticut.
The new Columbus store’s 213,000-square-foot solar array will produce about 1.4 million kWh of electricity annually, IKEA said in its announcement. For the development, design, and installation of the new store’s solar power system, IKEA selected commercial installer REC Solar,.
“Completing the solar installation is another exciting and sustainable step in the progress towards opening the future IKEA Columbus,” said David Garcia, store manager. “IKEA strives to create a sustainable life for communities where we operate, and IKEA Columbus is adding to this goal with one of Ohio’s largest rooftop solar arrays.”
This array represents the 46th solar project for IKEA in the United States, contributing, store management said, to an IKEA solar presence atop nearly 90 percent of its U.S. locations, with a total generation goal of more than 40-MW.
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 globally allocated $2.5 billion to invest in renewable energy through 2020