Last updated: July 24. 2013 2:47PM - 535 Views
Bret Bevens, PDT Sports Writer

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Frank Lewis

PDT Staff Writer

Imagine saving enough energy over 10 years to power every single family home in Columbus, Ohio for one year. The Kroger Company has already achieved that goal. Now the Columbus Division is announcing that 35 stores, including the Kroger store on Gay Street in Portsmouth, have been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for superior energy performance. Those stores have been awarded Energy Star Certification.

According to the EPA, buildings that use 35 percent less energy and generate 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than similar buildings across the nation are given the certification. While Kroger designs buildings to earn Energy Star accreditation, it takes one year of tracking energy usage for the building to earn the recognition.

“One of the initiatives that our customers have told us that’s important to them is sustainability, whether its with seafood; whether its with shopping bags, or whether its with energy efficiency” Jackie Siekmann, media and government relations manager for the Columbus Division, said. “So that’s something that our customer has told us is important to them. So we’re looking at ways in business that we can become more efficient in the way that we use energy.”

Siekmann listed a few of the ways Kroger is achieving that goal: motion sensors that turn lights on and off, skylights, and computer control systems that monitor and control energy usage in the store’s refrigeration, heating and cooling units. Kroger also utilizes LED lighting installed in glass door cases, fresh meat cases and backroom coolers and freezers that use 75 percent less energy than fluorescent lighting.

“Kroger stores that are built today use 30 percent less energy than stores that were built ten years ago,” Siekmann said. “The world of energy efficiency is always changing and every store Kroger remodels gets the latest technology, which goes a long way in energy conservation.”

She said the Columbus Division conservation efforts are part of a corporate-wide initiative to reduce energy consumption based on consumer requests. Nationwide, Kroger has saved more than 2.34 billion kilowatt hours, which equals 1.47 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, which she says equates to taking 292,000 cars off the road for one year.

Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at flewis@civitasmedia.com. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.

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