Tesco launches UK's greenest supermarket

Tesco launched the greenest supermarket in the UK today using wind turbines to power the checkouts and rainwater to wash the home-delivery vans.

Tesco launched the greenest supermarket in the UK today using wind turbines to power the checkouts and rainwater to wash the home-delivery vans.

The 50,000 sq ft store in Wick, north Scotland, is expected to cut its carbon footprint by 50%.

Tesco said it was setting a “benchmark for green technology in construction and retail”, and expects to use the store as a blueprint for future developments.

The company, which hopes to open 100 new shops in 2007, has pledged to half its per ft energy consumption by 2010.

The Wick store has been built using a larger amount of recycled, recyclable and sustainable products, as well as a host of locally-sourced materials.

The new bakery ovens save enough electricity each year to light one million light bulbs for an hour.

It is also thought the store will collect enough rainwater each year to fill more than 25,000 bath tubs.

Lucy Neville-Rolfe, company secretary of Tesco, said: “The Wick store is a great step forward for Tesco. It brings together the latest construction, engineering and sustainable technologies, from the timber frame and wood turbines to the re-use of rainwater and the use of natural light.

“We expect this to reduce the carbon footprint of the store by half. Not only that, it will allow us and others to take advantage of the lessons learned in years to come.”

Tesco announced worldwide sales of £22.7bn (€33.7bn) for the 26 weeks to August 26 - it means the firm earned £1,450 (€2,100) every second.

Earlier this year it ploughed £100m (€149m) into an environmental fund in a bid to encourage customers to recycle and to cut fuel consumption by its distribution fleet.

It has already used wind turbines at its Diss store in Norfolk, while solar panels are used at a branch in Swansea.

But Wick goes a few steps further by ensuring around 10% of the branch’s total energy is generated by wind and solar power.

The shop even boasts energy champions, who encourage staff to go about their daily tasks in an eco friendly manner.

The plan is to open another green store in Shrewsbury next year, but some of the Wick initiatives will also be used on other planned stores.

Tesco said its new Wick branch is its greenest supermarket in the UK. It aims to cut by 50% the carbon footprint of similar-sized stores.

:: To save on road miles, 1,500 tonnes of timber, tiles and other building materials were transported to the site by ship – eliminating 75 truck journeys.

:: The roof is three feet lower than a conventional store, reducing the amount of air that needs to be heated;

:: The store expects to harvest one million litres of rain water each year - it will be used to flush toilets and clean home delivery vans, for example;

:: Wick is the first Tesco store to have a wooden exterior. Even the petrol kiosk and car park signs are made of timber.

Garry Felgate, from the Carbon Trust, said: “Tesco’s new store is a great example of how business can incorporate innovative ideas into new buildings and create stores with low carbon footprints.”

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