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Swedish furniture giant IKEA has further stamped its mark in the US solar market and has officially turned on its 34th completed solar project in the US at its distribution centre near Savannah, Georgia. Covering 182,300 square feet, the 1,458.2kW solar array also represents Georgia’s largest private rooftop PV system.
Similar to its 32nd completed US solar project, the customized PV system was developed, designed and installed by Gehrlicher Solar America Corp, an independent PV project developer and system integrator. The project utilizes 6,076 PV modules which help to generate an output of approximately 1,973,562 kWh per year.
“Installing solar panels atop this facility demonstrates that the company’s sustainable commitment extends beyond our stores into all facets of the retail operations,” said William Jackson, Savannah distribution centre manager. “This solar array will reduce significantly the carbon footprint and electricity costs of this facility. We appreciate the continued support of the Chatham County, Georgia Power, and Gehrlicher Solar, our partners in this project.”
Just last month, IKEA announced the completion of its 32nd and 33rd US solar project in Connecticut and Texas respectively. So far, more than 75% of the company’s US stores have a solar installation. With five more locations in the pipeline, IKEA is set to have a solar presence in almost 89% of its US stores. Including these five projects, which are currently under construction, the company will have a PV capacity of 38MW.
According to a report by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and the Vote Solar Initiative released in September, IKEA ranks fourth among the top corporate companies using solar energy in the US for on-site consumption, beaten only by Wal-Mart, Costco Wholesale and Kohl’s Department Stores.
IKEA owns and operates each of its solar PV energy systems atop its buildings and has a budget of €590 million to invest in renewable energy with a strong focus on wind and solar energy in the next three years. So far, more than 250,000 solar panels have been installed on IKEA stores and buildings across the world.