Solar energy is being deployed on a massive scale by the most iconic brands and best-managed companies in the U.S. in order to help lower operating costs and increase profits. The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and the Vote Solar Initiative (Vote Solar) today unveiled a report naming the companies using solar on their facilities in the U.S., ranked by cumulative solar energy capacity.
The Top 20 (in terms of on-site solar capacity deployed) are: Walmart (WMT), Costco (COST), Kohl’s Department Stores (KSS), IKEA, Macy’s (M), McGraw-Hill (MHP), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Staples (SPLS), Campbell’s Soup (CPB), Walgreens (WAG), Bed, Bath & Beyond (BBBY), Toys ‘R’ Us (TOY), General Motors (GM), FedEx (FDX), White Rose Foods, Dow Jones (DJ), Snyder’s of Hanover (LNCE), ProLogis (PLD), Hartz Mountain Industries and Crayola.
(See the full report here.)
Combined, the Top 20 corporate solar users’ installations generate an estimated $47.3 million worth of electricity each year.
Other companies that are significant users of solar include Apple, Bloomberg LP, Del Monte Foods, GE, Google, Intel, JC Penny, Kaiser Permanente, Lackland Storage, Lord & Taylor, L’OREAL USA, MARS SNACKFOOD, US Foods LLC, Stop and Shop, Merck, REI, SAS Institute and Tiffany & CO.
In addition to looking at overall capacity, the report quantifies solar deployment by number of operating solar power systems, percentage of facilities outfitted with solar and the geographic diversity of the installations.
“These companies know that solar energy allows them to reliably manage their long-term energy costs and in turn also helps to keep their customer prices low,” said SEIA President and CEO Rhone Resch. “Solar helps these top American companies focus on their core business by reducing overhead costs.”
“What do all of these major businesses have in common?,” said Adam Browning, executive director of Vote Solar. ”They know a good deal when they see one, and so they are all going solar in a big way across the U.S.”
Below are some key findings from the report:
- The Top 20 corporate solar users’ installations generate an estimated $47.3 million worth of electricity each year. Altogether, U.S. commercial solar installations have reduced business’ utility bills by hundreds of millions of dollars annually.
- The amount of solar installed by the Top 20 solar-powered companies could power more than 46,500 average American homes. Altogether, U.S. commercial solar installations could power more than 390,000 American homes.
- The companies analyzed for this report have deployed more than 700 individual solar photovoltaic (PV) systems on their facilities in at least 25 states and Puerto Rico.
- More than 1.2 million solar PV panels were used for the Top 20 corporate solar users’ installations. Combined, these arrays would cover more than 544 acres of rooftops.
- Walmart and Costco combined have more solar PV installed on their store rooftops than all of the PV capacity deployed in the state of Florida, the Sunshine State.
- The top 10 companies (by capacity) have individually deployed more solar energy than most electric utilities in the United States.
Today more than 100,000 Americans work at 5,600 solar energy companies across the nation in all 50 states. The industry more than doubled the amount of solar installed in the U.S. in the second quarter of this year compared to 2011, and growth is expected to continue in the second half of 2012.