Commercial, Finance, Solar, Sourcing Renewables  -  April 27, 2016

Macy's expects to have 99 solar systems installed by year-end

Macy's expects to add 21 solar systems to its facilities in 2016, which will bring its grand total installations to 99. 

The retailer announced its plans in a recent news release in which it praised its decade-long relationship with solar developer SunPower, whose systems will, at the end of 2016, account for 71 of the installations at Macy's and Bloomingdale's locations across 10 states, totaling approximately 39 MW. 

SunPower is also providing Macy's with battery storage systems at three of its stores in Southern California. The energy storage technology is expected to help those locations further manage energy costs by offsetting demand charges incurred by commercial customers.

Of the 21 systems planned for Macy's facilities this year, 19 of them — or 13 MW — will use the SunPower's Helix system, which is a trademark. 

Macy's said it is financing the majority of the SunPower solar power systems on its stores through power purchase agreements, which allows the retailer to buy power at competitive rates that act as a hedge against future utility rate increases, with no upfront capital cost. Macy's said it does not own the renewable energy credits associated with most of the SunPower solar power systems installed on its facilities.

"We are so excited to partner with SunPower and join the fight against climate change," Chuck Abt, Macy's senior vice president of operations and logistics, said in the release. "Macy's is dedicated to giving back to local communities and, through this partnership, we continue to make a meaningful difference in improving the environment. This solar technology partnership is a major component of our sustainable practice and we are committed to improving our carbon footprint for years to come."

According to estimates provided by the U.S. EPA, the carbon dioxide emissions avoided each year as a result of the power produced from the 71 installed and contracted SunPower solar power systems on Macy's facilities is equivalent to the CO2 emissions from more than 37 million pounds of coal burned, or almost 4 million gallons of gasoline consumed.

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