Energy Efficiency, Commercial, Sourcing Renewables - April 18, 2018
Walmart announces Project Gigaton progress, plans for expanding EV charging
Walmart announced that suppliers have reported reducing more than 20 million metric tons of GHG emissions in the global value chain, as part of the company’s Project Gigaton initiative. This progress was shared at Walmart’s annual Sustainability Milestone Summit on Apr. 18.
"In its first year, Project Gigaton has helped to inspire action that has led to the avoidance of millions of metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions and has expanded into an international campaign that includes the participation of several hundred suppliers," said Kathleen McLaughlin, senior vice president and chief sustainability officer for Walmart" in a statement. The early success of Project Gigaton parallels ongoing progress in our operational efforts that seek to double our U.S. renewable energy use and expand our customer electric vehicle charging hubs to retail outlets across more than 30 states."
With the recent expansion of Project Gigaton in China and the U.K., more than 400 suppliers with operations in more than 30 countries have joined the program. Approximately 85 percent of the Project Gigaton emissions reductions reported by suppliers have focused their efforts on the energy and product use pillars, with projects devoted to areas such as renewable energy investments and the development of more efficient products. McLaughlin said progress in these two areas "makes sense. Those are materially relevant, you can see why people would get started there."
The Summit featured the announcement of a commitment made by Project Gigaton participant Procter & Gamble to cut 50 MMT of emissions from its operations and value chain by 2030. P&G has committed to source 100 percent renewable electricity in its North American operations by 2020.
Walmart revealed plans to more than double its EV charging station sites with the addition of several hundred charging stalls across its operations in 34 states. This expansion will bring Walmart’s total number of charging units to well over 1,000, creating a national grid of electric vehicle charging availability at hundreds of Walmart stores and Sam’s Club locations. Doug McMillon, president and CEO, Walmart, said “It will make us one of the largest providers of charging stations in the country. We are going to have several that are super fast, where you can charge in about 10 minutes.”
Walmart also discussed recent progress in renewable energy that will move it closer toward its 2025 goal of being supplied globally with 50 percent renewable energy. New initiatives include expansion of on-site solar energy installments. Walmart, already the leading company in the U.S. for a number of locations utilizing on-site solar energy, plans to add an additional 130 sites which will bring its total to approximately 500 locations across 22 U.S. states and Puerto Rico, surpassing its 2014 goal to double its onsite solar use by 2020.
"I love being a merchant but having purpose behind it, where you actually know you are doing good as a team, is much more important than what the comp store sales were yesterday,” said McMillion at the Summit. “We need them both but how we do this matters a lot and I’m proud of being part of Walmart.”
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