On September 22, 2012, at its distribution center in Red Bluff, California, Walmart had its first onsite large-scale wind turbine project begin generation. The wind turbine will provide roughly one megawatt of power or 15 to 20 percent of the distribution center’s yearly electrical use.
- Greg Pool – Senior Manager of renewable energy and emissions, Walmart
The new wind turbine features a tower height (265 feet) and a blade diameter (250 feet) approximately equal to the height of a 20-story building. The GE SLE 1.0 Megawatt Wind Turbine is projected to produce approximately 2,200,000 kilowatt hours annually. Over the term of the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) the project will contribute to energy expense savings as well as provide price certainty for the electricity produced. Under a PPA arrangement Foundation Windpower installs, owns, and operates the wind turbine and Walmart purchases the power produced under a long term agreement.
We are using every tool in the tool box as we work toward our goal to be supplied by 100 percent renewable energy, and wind energy is an attractive technology for Walmart, said Greg Pool, senior manager of renewable energy and emissions at Walmart and project manager of the Red Bluff installation. We found the perfect environment for an installation with the Red Bluff project – good wind conditions and open land that we own. As a result, we expect to reduce our energy costs from the day we flip the on switch.