The Smyrna Rexall in Smyrna, Tennessee, decided to install solar panels on the roof of its retail store when its electricity bill doubled after moving its business into a bigger space, reports The Daily News Journal. The 30-kilowatt system is expected to supply all of the store’s electricity use per month, depending on the weather.
SolarTek installed the solar energy system, which will track how much energy is produced and used as well as how much is not produced on a cloudy day. Lee Cole, who runs the business his father bought in 1967, told the newspaper that all of the electricity generated by the system will be sold to the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) then the business will buy it back at a cheaper rate.
Cole also said in the article that the goal is to eliminate the store’s electric bill and if there is surplus at the end of each month to earn some money.
Cole did not say how much the system cost to install but said it was partially funded by the Tennessee Clean Energy Technology Grant for renewable energy. The state reimburses up to 40 percent of a project’s cost up to $75,000, according to The Daily News Journal.
Cole also noted that the business won’t see a return on its investment for many years, but will save and earn the company money over the long term.
The pharmacy also plans to turn a small building once used as an ATM into a charging station for the Nissan LEAF electric vehicle, which will be produced in Smyrna, according to the article.
Rexall also is recycling about 90 percent of all paper and plastic used at the store. All cardboard is recycled locally.
Over the past year, a host of pharmacies have implemented environmental initiatives that help save energy as well as boost their recycling rates.
For the CVS retail chain, this includes several initiatives aimed at better managing energy consumption at its stores such as installing more efficient lighting and new roofs designed to reflect heat, and integrating energy management systems.