Co-op makes further energy cuts

Supermarket chain the Co-op has embarked on a scheme to further reduce its carbon footprint by retro-fitting energy efficiency systems in many of its 4,500 stores.

The food retailers, which prides itself on its ethical credentials, has now completed the first phase of the scheme fitting the systems in 260 of its stores, resulting in energy savings in the region of 18GWh per year.

That has resulted in cutting carbon emissions by roughly the equivalent to those produced by 800 homes or 4,000 cars.

The company commissioned energy management specialists Evolve Energy to realise the ongoing project which, when complete, aims to cut the Co-operative Group’s energy consumption by 25%.

Alex Pitman, group energy efficiency manager for the Co-operative, said: “We are extremely pleased with the results that Evolve has achieved for us across this first phase.

“The Co-operative has always had a pro-active stance on climate and energy issues and this partnership reaffirms that commitment.

“We wanted to ensure that these measures were not just environmentally but also financially viable.

“With 24 hour monitoring and control, Evolve has given us the ability to constantly manage our energy usage.”

The systems that have been installed have a payback period of around 18 months.

The scheme focused primarily on installing energy monitoring and control systems for the Co-operative’s existing lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems.

This meant that the Co-operative could avoid the expensive route of buying new fridges and in-store equipment, but rather focus on a more efficient use of energy within the equipment they already owned.

Gary Parke, CEO of Evolve Energy said: “The Co-operative deserves to be recognised as a climate leader for the range of work it is doing.

“The savings we have made on behalf of the Co-operative to date just goes to show what can be achieved in terms of energy savings in a relatively short space of time.”

Sam Bond

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