Hunting for Energy Savings

Hunting for Energy Savings New ways to cut energy use and costs

Over time, we have set increasingly ambitious goals to reduce our carbon emissions. Tackling climate change means shifting habits and ways of thinking that have become engrained. Sometimes an action will feel obvious in retrospect; other times, it means breaking into new territory. One of our recent initiatives reflected both of these ideas. To find what we might not be seeing, we formed cross-functional teams of service providers, engineers and environmental impact experts to conduct “treasure hunts” at some of our stores and distribution centers (DCs). Their mandate: to look with fresh eyes at our operations and uncover new opportunities for improvements.

Hunting for energy savings

We formed teams of service providers, engineers and environmental impact experts to conduct energy “treasure hunts” at our stores and distribution centers.

We found 90 improvement opportunities at our distribution center in Fresno, California, which reduced energy use by 17 percent and operating costs by 30 percent.

We found many of them, a reminder that even the familiar can yield new ideas. Over the past two years, our “hunts” have led us to install LED lighting and smart thermostats, which allow us to adjust the temperature based on varying needs at different times of day. At our DC in Fresno, California, we found 90 improvement opportunities, which reduced energy use by 17 percent and operating costs by 30 percent. As we expected, some of the changes now seem easy, such as shutting off unneeded lights in the evening. Altogether, we conducted environmental treasure hunts at eight U.S. store locations and three DCs, and we rolled out changes based on priority and return on investment.