Sainsbury’s Durham store is home to a number of green build technologies with renewable power generation what the chain is describing as ‘ground-breaking’ refrigeration technology.

Refrigeration technology, which was announced last November, is the beginning of a phase out of F gas refrigeration in favour of the more environmentally friendly CO2.

The move, which was hailed by Greenpeace at the time as an industry-leading step forward, will reduce the company’s carbon footprint by around a third.

Store bosses say the site will be the first of the retailers to use a biomass boiler for power by burning wood pellets.

Sainsbury’s is the first retailer to use this kind of boiler, which reduces the amount of energy needed from the grid and uses waste wood that would otherwise have been sent to landfill sites.

Sainsbury’s commercial director, Neil Sachdev, said: “It seems rather counterintuitive, but by adding this space to the building, we are actually reducing its overall environmental impact and we regard this as a great feat and a sign of things to come.

“By 2019 new legislation will mean that all new commercial developments will have to be zero carbon.

“This is clearly a massive challenge for business, but it is one that we have taken on with great enthusiasm.”

Luke Walsh

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie