Walmart unveils big plans for solar


As President Barack Obama made his way to the Mountain View store this morning, Walmart leaders announced plans to double the number of solar panels on its U.S. stores and distribution centers.

Bill Simon, president and CEO of Walmart, said his company is already leading American companies in generating solar power, but plans to produce 7 billion kWh of renewable energy by the end of 2020.

"When Walmart commits to something it gives other companies the incentive" to move ahead, he said. Walmart's initiative would have a "ripple effect" in reducing the price of solar, he said. The company itself expects to save $1 billion in energy costs by 2020. The company now saves $4.8 million a year with 240 solar installations.

Simon said the Mountain View store was chosen for the event because 15 percent of its energy comes from an on-site solar array.

"Walmart's scale, brand, and leadership is sending the signal that solar is cost effective," said Lyndon Rive, CEO of Solar City, the company that supplied solar panels to the store.

Obama is scheduled to speak at 9:55 a.m. Watch this site for news about the event.


Like this comment
Posted by RON
a resident of Shoreline West
on May 9, 2014 at 12:46 pm

Funny how the POTUS praising Walmart to Solar panels yet a few years ago when Administration funded a company named Solindra with tax payer money and it went belly up after the same POTUS visited it. With any luck this Walmart will Close and that would be a good thing since it is the worst I have been to. FYI most solar panels are made in China at a cheeper price.
Walmart-China match made in heaven.

Like this comment
Posted by OR
a resident of Castro City
on May 9, 2014 at 1:03 pm

"The company expects to save $1 billion."
Would those savings then be used to increase the wages of their workers? Can the money saved be used to pay for their worker's health care costs which is currently being absorbed by us, taxpayers? I did not hear or see mention that WMT cared about their employees. Wal-Mart also doesn't care about the environment. Professor Robert Reich can tell you that also. Web Link
WMT only cares about saving money for their board and top shareholders. Obama could have gone to Foothill College to show off solar panel installation. He mentioned community colleges in his speech but no mention about the rising costs of tuition.

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