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Supermarkets Shifting to Greener Buildings

supermarkets.jpgBoth Shaw’s Supermarkets and Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. are making their stores greener, revealing a green commercial architecture trend that could grow from $3 billion in 2006 to $27 billion by 2010, the Patriot Ledger reports.

Shaw’s Supermarket is building a store in Newton, Mass., that will get 90 percent of its electricity from a 400-kilowatt fuel cell powered by natural gas. This is expected to reduce the store’s energy use by up to 211,000 kilowatt hours per year. Shaw’s Supermarkets also plans to install LED lights in freezer cases at 25 stores, with the Newton store serving as a pilot.

Since 2002, Stop & Shop has been moving towards greener buildings. The company spent more than $12 million this year installing low-energy light bulbs, energy-efficient freezer doors and modifying refrigeration systems. In April, 51 Stop & Shop stores received LEED certification.

In June, the EPA’s GreenChill Advanced Refrigeration Partnership, which works with the supermarket industry, says it had prevented emissions of 2.5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.

In March, Wal-Mart said its latest high efficiency store aims to reduce energy use by 45 percent.  The previous target was a 25 percent energy reduction compared with a regular Supercenter.

Supermarkets across the globe are greening up their acts. Tesco recently announced that it has saved 2 billion plastic bags in about two years without adding a bag tax. The supermarket chain is also a leader in testing carbon labels on products.

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