Lidl has completed the installation of energy-saving solar panels at its Birr store adding a further investment of €130,000 in renewable energy. The newly installed solar panels will produce 120,000 kilowatt hours of energy from a sustainable resource annually which is equivalent to meet the electricity requirements of 28 homes and reduces the store’s carbon output by some 40 tonnes annually. As a result of the investment over one quarter of Lidl’s energy requirements at its Birr store will now be generated by solar power. The investment in Birr is part of an ongoing €1 million commitment by Lidl to install solar panels at eight new and reconstructed stores. The solar panels are supplied by Cavan-based Kingspan, which are mounted on roof panels constructed in Kingscourt.
Increasing consumer awareness of sustainability is an in important element of the project; a display screen at the entrance of the store inform customers visiting the store of how much energy has been generated and the amount of CO2 emissions saved.
The focus on sustainable energy at Lidl’s Birr store has ensured that it complies with a best-practice international energy efficiency standard, ISO50001, which is independently audited, along with all its 158 stores nationwide. Other initiatives include: high performance glass fronted façade to maximise natural daylight entering the building; sensor controlled exterior sun blinds to reduce unwanted heat from the sun; waste heat recovery ventilation systems and LED lighting; high insulation with external cladding; and lighting sensors to conserve energy where it is not required.
Speaking after switching on the solar panels in Lidl Birr, Eamonn Fitzgerald Project Manager said: "Lidl is rooted in communities throughout Ireland and wants to ensure our business is operated in a way that is as sustainable as possible with the least impact possible on the environment. We were very clear when building the Birr store in 2018 that we would integrate the latest sustainability innovations that will generate ongoing energy savings. The newly installed solar panels will make a big impact in increasing our energy from sustainable resources by generating over 25% of our Birr store’s energy needs annually."
This latest investment is just part of a range of sustainability initiatives being introduced by Lidl in the coming months. In addition to the solar installations Lidl is rolling out recycling bins in store to allow customers leave unwanted packaging behind.
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