STOUGHTON, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--IKEA, the world’s leading home furnishings retailer, today officially plugged-in an expanded solar energy array atop its Boston-area store that opened nine years ago in Stoughton, MA. The 51,516-square-foot solar panel addition consists of a 318-kW system built with 1,248 panels, and will produce 385,900 kWh more of electricity annually for the store. This solar expansion sits atop a 58,575-s.f. store extension completed last summer. Now, IKEA Stoughton’s total 908.8-kW solar installation of 5,468 panels will generate 1,080,900 kWh of clean electricity yearly, the equivalent of reducing 745 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2), eliminating the emissions of 157 cars or powering 103 homes (calculating clean energy equivalents at www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy-resources/calculator.html).
For the development, design and installation of this store’s enhanced solar power system, IKEA contracted IKEA contracted with Gehrlicher Solar America Corp., a leading solar energy system integrator in the Americas and a company of the multinational M+W Group.
“We are pleased our newly expanded store created the opportunity to expand the rooftop solar array,” said Anton van Dongen, store manager. “We are proud to make this investment, to grow our local sustainable footprint, and to contribute to the IKEA goal of energy independence.”
Expanding this array contributes to the IKEA solar presence of nearly 90% of its U.S. locations with a total generation goal of 40 MW. IKEA owns and operates each of its solar PV energy systems atop its buildings – as opposed to a solar lease or PPA (power purchase agreement) – and globally has allocated $1.8 billion to invest in renewable energy through 2015, reinforcing its confidence and investment in solar photovoltaic technology. Consistent with the goal of being energy independent by 2020, IKEA has installed more than 700,000 solar panels on buildings across the world and owns approximately 157 wind turbines in Europe and Canada, with 104 more being built in the U.S. Other IKEA arrays have been expanded too.
IKEA, drawing from its Swedish heritage and respect of nature, aims to minimize impacts on the environment. Globally, IKEA evaluates locations regularly for conservation opportunities, integrates innovative materials into product design, works to maintain sustainable resources, and flat-packs goods for efficient distribution. Specific U.S. efforts include: recycling waste material; incorporating energy-efficient HVAC and lighting systems, recycled construction materials, skylights in warehouse areas, and water-conserving restrooms. Operationally, IKEA eliminated plastic bags from the check-out process, phased-out the sale of incandescent bulbs, facilitates recycling of customers’ compact fluorescent bulbs, and by 2016 will sell only L.E.D. IKEA also has installed EV charging stations at 13 stores, with plans for more locations.
Located on 27 acres along Route 24 near Central Street (Exit 19B), the 415,575-s.f. IKEA Stoughton opened in November 2005, and employs approximately 400 coworkers. In addition to 10,000 exclusively designed items, IKEA Stoughton presents 50 different room-settings, three model home interiors, a supervised children’s play area, and a 450-seat restaurant. Other family-friendly features include a ‘Children’s IKEA’ area in the Showroom, baby care rooms, play areas throughout the store, and preferred parking. IKEA Stoughton was awarded LEED certification by the U.S. Green Building Council and hosts a green roof atop the store adjacent to where the solar panels were installed originally, as well as the expanded array now completed.
Since its 1943 founding in Sweden, IKEA has offered home furnishings of good design and function at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currently more than 360 IKEA stores in 47 countries, including 40 in the U.S. IKEA incorporates sustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment. For more information see IKEA-USA.com, @IKEAUSA, @IKEAUSANews, or IKEAUSA on Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and Pinterest.