Walmart commits to the deployment of lighter, lower cost thin film solar technology through the installation of generating capacity at sites in the West.
The solar capacity is sized to generate almost a third of the power requirements for the targeted stores.
The thin film solar technology will focus on accelerating CIGS market adoption. …
… “The company plans to add solar generating systems to another 20 to 30 sites in California and Arizona, and the majority of these locations will feature the new technology.
When complete, this project is expected to:
- supply up to 20 to 30 percent of the total energy needs for each location;
- produce up to 22.5 million kilowatt hours of clean energy per year – enough to power more than 1,750 homes annually;
- avoid producing more than 11,650 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent annually, equal to taking more than 3,000 vehicles off the road for a year;
- add to the 31 current solar installations Walmart has in California and Hawaii.
Thin film solar panels look similar to the traditional crystalline panels, but require fewer raw materials to manufacture, resulting in a smaller environmental impact over its life cycle.
The Walmart projects are using both copper indium gallium selenide (CIGS) and cadmium telluride thin film.
The company’s large scale on-site installation of CIGS could help further the development of this technology and bring it to market quicker, while use of cadmium telluride thin film could help make the case for other businesses to adopt the technology for on-site commercial use.
SolarCity, which will design, install, own and maintain the new solar power systems on Walmart locations, was selected through an RFP process spearheaded by Walmart and the national environmental group, Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).
The goal of the RFP was to identify the most innovative solar technologies that would create benefits on three fronts—to the environment, technology, and financial viability.” …
Via Walmart: Thin Film Solar Technology (Link to Release).
SolarCity is Walmart’s solar partner.
Walmart collaborates with the Environmental Defense Fund to develop its sustainability strategies.