IKEA expands fuel cell use to East Coast store - Smart Energy Decisions

Commercial, Energy Storage, Commercial, Solar, Sourcing Renewables  -  August 23, 2016

IKEA expands rooftop solar, fuel cell portfolios

Continuing to increase its use of renewable energy systems in the U.S., IKEA made two new project announcements this week. 

The first, announced Aug. 23, expands IKEA's fuel cell portfolio to the East Coast; the company is planning a biomass-powered system to complement a solar installation at its store in New Haven, Conn. A day later, IKEA announced plans for its 44th U.S. solar project, which will be atop its Renton, Wash., store currently under construction.  

The fuel cell expansion follows the home furnishing retailer's July announcement of plans to build four similar projects at four California stores; those plans came after the successful installation of an initial fuel cell system at one of its San Francisco area stores in 2015. Pending permits, the New Haven fuel cell system will be installed, commissioned and operational by this fall, bringing IKEA's fuel cell portfolio to more than 1.5 MW.

Slightly larger than the physical size of a commercial back-up generator, the 250-kw, biogas-powered project will produce approximately 2,081,376 kWh of electricity annually for the store, the equivalent of reducing 1,218 tons of carbon dioxide, IKEA said in its Aug. 23 news release. Combined with the 940.8-kW solar array installed atop the store in 2012, the fuel cell project will help generate a majority of the store’s energy onsite.

IKEA contracted with Bloom Energy for the design, development and installation of the Connecticut fuel cell system, according to the release. The California systems were also provided by Bloom Energy. 

REC Solar was selected to develop, design and install the Washington store’s 1.18 MW solar power system, IKEA noted in an Aug. 24 news release. 

IKEA has big sustainability goals that include its growing use of renewable energy: The company is aiming to be energy independent by 2020. 

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