Commercial Case Studies

Wind Power for Commercial Projects: Case Studies

Winds of Change Blowing at Sam's Club in Palmdale
Walmart Tests the Wind- Giant Store Fits Retail Formula
Turn, Turn, Turn: U.S. Wineries Try Wind Power
Lamar to Retrofit Billboards Throughout Florida with Solar, Wind Power
Telecom Wind Energy Projects for Rural Sri Lanka

Winds of Change Blowing at Sam's Club in Palmdale

BENTONVILLE, Ark., April 29, 2010 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- As part of a company commitment to be supplied 100 percent by renewable energy, Sam’s Club is the first retailer in the U.S. to install a significant number of micro wind turbines mounted on parking lot light poles to support the energy needs of its Palmdale, Calif., location. Construction is complete, and the 17 units are fully operational.

“Walmart and Sam’s Club are to be congratulated for taking on this major wind energy initiative and choosing the Palmdale store for their first wind installation,” said Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford. “This kind of project, in addition to being good for the environment, helps reduce energy costs, which can be passed on to the consumer in the form of lower prices. This project is an outstanding example of the kind of sustainable practices the City of Palmdale is encouraging for the benefit of the environment and community as a whole.”

The Palmdale Sam’s Club was selected for the test project among all of the Walmart-owned properties in the U.S. because of the great wind resources in the area. The micro wind turbines at the Palmdale Sam’s Club are supplied by DeerPath Energy, a renewable energy company from Marblehead, Mass., and are estimated to provide 76,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of energy annually – enough to power more than six average American homes for a year. The completion of this project adds to the company’s other renewable energy projects in the state, including solar installations at 28 Walmart and Sam’s Club sites and fuel cell installations at two Walmart stores in the state.

“We are thrilled to be the first to demonstrate micro wind turbines in a retail environment and pleased this project complements other wind and solar installations in California,” said Paul Stone, senior vice president, West Division, Sam’s Club. “This project required a lot of collaboration and we appreciate the City of Palmdale for their efforts throughout the process and construction.”

Wind power is one of the most environmentally friendly sources of renewable energy since there are no greenhouse gas emissions or pollution associated with energy generation. Wind turbines rotate to convert the kinetic energy of the wind into mechanical energy.

“We are optimistic that this exciting micro wind turbine project at the Palmdale Sam’s Club and another pilot location will be successful and that the micro turbines will be installed, operated and maintained while helping to lower our operating costs,” said Kim Saylors-Laster, vice president, Energy at Walmart. “With each new project we learn more that can be applied to help us achieve our goal to be supplied by renewable energy.”

In early May, Walmart will celebrate the completion of a similar micro wind turbine project at a new Walmart store in Worcester, Mass. Moving forward, Walmart plans to consider other locations for micro wind projects as well.

In addition to reducing energy use at its facilities, Sam’s Club is helping its members conserve energy and save money. In 2008, Sam’s Club converted nine locations in Southern California to include Home Efficiency Centers. These Centers provide a centralized location to showcase products that improve the efficiency of homes or businesses and include energy-efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL) and LED lighting, outdoor solar lighting, high performance furnace filters, high-efficiency toilets and water-saving showerheads. As a result of the success, these key items were rolled out to all clubs nationwide in spring of 2009. As of June 2009, sales of GE CFLs and LED lighting are expected to help Members save more than $360 million over the lifespan of the bulbs, while preventing approximately 5 billion pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere – equivalent to taking more than 430,000 cars off the road.

About Sam’s Club

Sam’s Club is a division of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., ( WMT). The first Sam’s Club opened its doors in Midwest City, Okla., in 1983. Today, Sam’s Club serves more than 47 million U.S. Members with locations nationwide, as well as in Brazil, China, Mexico and Puerto Rico. Sam’s Club saves its members on average 30.4 percent over grocery and specialty retailers by offering superior values on quality merchandise and services for home or work. Saving is made simple at Sam’s Club. Visit for more information.

Source: Sam's Club

Walmart Tests the Wind- Giant Store Fits Retail Formula

WORCESTER — Walmart has circled Worcester for years, but this week it lands in the city with the opening of a 209,000-square-foot supercenter near Route 146.

The store, which opens at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday after a 7:30 a.m. ceremony, combines a supermarket with Walmart's general merchandise and a few extras such as a vehicle tire and lube center and space for renters offering sandwiches, salon services and computer games.

“At this store, our expectation is to meet your need for everything,” said store manager David G. Ebbeling.

The supercenter concept is nothing new to Central Massachusetts. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. of Bentonville, Ark., which also operates the Sam's Club chain, already operates nine supercenters in the state, including supercenters in Leominster, Leicester and Northbridge.

The Worcester store, however, contains a few variations on Walmart's conventional supercenter design. Most visibly, the store has placed 12 wind turbines atop 48-foot light poles in the parking lot to help generate electricity for the parking lot lights and the store. The project obtained the first permit in the city for small wind installations under an ordinance adopted in January.

Deerpath Energy Inc. of Marblehead financed, designed and installed the turbines, and it will sell the electricity to Walmart under a 10- to 25-year contract, according to Deerpath founder and Chief Executive Kellogg L. Warner. The Worcester installation is the first in a Walmart parking lot on the East Coast and the second at a company site in the United States. The first is at a Sam's Club in Palmdale, Calif.

Mr. Warner said the south-facing turbines could reduce the Worcester store's use of electricity from conventional power sources by 5 percent.

“They're getting clean electricity, and they're saving a little money,” Mr. Kellogg said.

At 209,000 square feet, the store is also larger than the 185,000-square-foot average Massachusetts supercenter, and it will dwarf low-price grocers that operate smaller stores. Price Rite, a Wakefern Food Corp. subsidiary that typically operates stores covering about 35,000 square feet, has two stores in Worcester. European discount retailer Aldi Foods has indicated it plans to build a 16,650-square-foot grocery store on Lincoln Street.

To make navigation easier for shoppers, the Worcester supercenter has repositioned certain merchandise departments, such as cosmetics and home paper goods, as well as a pharmacy, next to grocery aisles so supermarket customers need not trek across the store to pick up a bottle of lotion or package of toilet paper.

“In my experience, some of the elderly customers, when they come in, they don't want to walk all the way across the store,” said Mr. Ebbeling, who previously managed Walmart's Oxford store.

Most Walmart supercenters in the state carry about 142,000 different types of items. Mr. Ebbeling said the Worcester store's bakery also will carry fresh-baked baguettes and the grocery will offer a full aisle of ethnic foods.

“We want to make sure we carry a little bit of everything for everybody,” he said.

Although Walmart is alone in its shopping plaza for now, developer Madison Properties of Boston plans to begin site work this summer on additional buildings on the 44-acre former site of the Washburn Moen South Works/U.S. Steel Co. plant.

The developer is planning a 136,000-square-foot Sam's Club to replace the Sam's Club in the Greendale neighborhood and an Olive Garden restaurant, both of which will sit just south of the Walmart's parking area.

Work on an additional 30,000 square feet of space nearby for nine to 10 retailers could start in the fall, according to Madison Properties President Denis P. Dowdle.

When all phases of the $33 million development are complete, the project should generate about $1.1 million in property taxes for the city, according to city officials.

Meanwhile, Mr. Dowdle said he expects Walmart to do brisk business in its new setting.

“It's the biggest Walmart in New England in a very densely populated area,” he said. “All those things combined with the visibility of the area and the access off the highway, we expect it will be very busy.”

Turn, Turn, Turn: U.S. Wineries Try Wind Power
Producers look beyond solar for other forms of renewable energy

Wine Spectator | January 8, 2010
By Dana Nigro

When planning his new Anaba winery in Sonoma's Petaluma Gap, proprietor John Sweazey had to give very careful consideration to how to situate the tasting room's outdoor space. Strong winds come off the ocean two-thirds of the year, and the hills around his site act as a funnel. "On a windy day, it's not fun to be out there," he said. Without the shelter of the building and protective glass partitions, "if guests step outside, the wind will blow their wig off, or at least the wine out of their glass."

That's exactly what prompted Sweazey to put up a sleek 45-foot-high wind turbine on his 16-acre property in December, making Anaba the first winery in Northern California to do so. He estimates he will save about $1,000 a year on electricity for his tasting room, offices, case storage and irrigation system. The turbine is connected to the utility grid, so when the wind produces more power than Anaba is using, it's sold to the power company, offsetting the winery's annual bill.

"The economics worked relatively well," says Sweazey, who named his year-old brand after a type of wind. With a federal tax credit and a state rebate covering half of the expense, he expects the Skystream 3.7 turbine—which cost $21,000, with permits and set-up fees—to pay for itself in eight to 12 years. If all goes well, Sweazey hopes to add more turbines, along with solar power, when he builds a new production facility.

Across the nation, a handful of small U.S. wineries—ranging from Alaska to Texas, Oregon to Michigan to New York's Finger Lakes—are harnessing the wind with turbines, and more are planning to follow suit. New technology is making small-scale wind generation more affordable and efficient, as well as quieter and less obtrusive, while federal, state and local subsidies are helping farmers offset the initial costs. Vineyards are a very promising venue, says Russ Jonas, owner of Jonas Energy Solutions, which installed Anaba's turbine: "They are a great source because they have a low crop and cover wide areas with no obstacles."

Lamar to Retrofit Billboards Throughout Florida with Solar, Wind Power

Lamar Skystream
PENSACOLA, Fla. -- Lamar Advertising Co., which operates more than 150 outdoor advertising companies in more than 40 states and Puerto Rico, has announced a multidimensional project to convert some 1,370 billboards throughout Florida to renewable energy. The $12.5-million project will place solar or wind power on billboards throughout the state, creating 1,370 individual renewable energy systems that return energy to the electrical grid.

“This represents the largest single deployment of distributed renewable energy devices in Florida history,” said Robert B. Switzer, vice president of operations of Lamar Advertising. “With the completion of this historic project, we will be sending a clear message to millions of Florida residents and visitors every day that renewable energy works.”

The project, set for completion by April 2012, will install a total of one Megawatt (1,000 kilowatts) of renewable energy generation in the form of solar or wind power on 1,370 separate billboard structures in eight markets from Pensacola to Daytona and Tallahassee to Fort Myers. The installations will be on billboards along interstates and major thoroughfares, giving the project the widest public exposure. The U.S. Department of Energy is providing a $2.5-million grant to the project through the Florida Energy and Climate Commission and the Governor’s Energy Office, while Lamar is funding the remaining $10 million.

As part of its initiative, Lamar Advertising is sponsoring Renewable Florida, a Web-based clearinghouse to help Floridians find the easiest and most cost-efficient ways of maximizing renewable energy. To learn more, go to

“Over the 20- to 25-year life span of the billboards converted to renewable energy, we will return an untold amount of renewable, emission-free energy to the power grid while demonstrating in a very graphic manner to the public the payoff that comes with renewable energy,” Switzer said. “In the long run, this will mean significant savings for Lamar. The lifespan of these systems allows them to be amortized, giving us a very logical business rationale for incorporating systems such as these on a widespread basis.”

For more information about the benefits of renewable energy, explore

Read more:

Telecom Wind Energy Projects for Rural Sri Lanka

Singapore based green firm, Daily Life Renewable Energy (DLRE) will fund wind energy projects in remote areas in Sri Lanka with over US $ one million investment.

The company will be focusing on the telecommunication sector, in particular on wiring up the telecommunication base stations with renewable energy to complement diesel generators currently in place.

The DLRE will fund the projects and their share will be recovered in the long run by selling the product to relevant project partners.

DLRE Operations Manager Patricia Alvina said solar and wind energy generators do not need fuel and frequent maintenance and high pilferage rates.

This has raised a separate issue on real maintenance cost and the environmental issue. "Deployment on a large scale in the telecommunication sector is therefore viable and commercially sensible," she said.

Curtin University Australia Professor Chem Nayar, Guest Speaker at the workshop organized by DLRE on "High penetration renewable energy application, remote area power system," said there is tremendous potential for renewable energy in Sri Lanka which is highly underutilized.

"Sri Lanka needs huge investments for rural electrification which is in progress currently. But right policies by the Government is very vital to implement the projects". Remote areas are often beset with minimum infrastructure and more often than not non-existent electricity supply. Solar and wind energy produces electricity sufficient for remote areas and has been deployed in many parts of the world already.

"The solar panels and wind turbines generate electricity in the vicinity of 10KW thereabouts and is generally sufficient to meet the load requirements, which are often lighting, water pumps and communications gear," he said.

DLRE is involved in numerous renewable energy projects across the Asia Pacific Region. It has conducted needs assessment, policy structuring, financing and implementation for clients and Government bodies in Maldives, Australia and Thailand.

Wind turbines, solar applications, and hybrid generators are some of their principal products. ACMA Engineers in Sri Lanka is the country representative for DLRE.

Source: Daily News

How to Buy