Cool Roofing Web Exclusive: Automotive Distribution Center Looks to Renewable Energy
The Service Parts Operations Parts Distribution Center in Rancho Cucamonga, California, is among the nation’s largest corporate solar photovoltaic installations. UNI-SOLAR laminates installed on the roof help keep costs down and reduce the facility’s environmental impact.
The solar laminates power the warehouse from morning until night where 215 employees ship nearly 76,000 customers’ orders to GM car dealerships across California and Arizona. Using solar laminates to power 50 percent of its operations enables the facility to save 10 percent of its electricity costs each year. Solar energy not consumed will feed back into the California power grid, helping thousands of Californian’s power their own homes.
The installation was part of an overall program that has enabled GM to reduce its energy from 94 trillion BTU in 2002, to 72.5 trillion BTU by the end of 2006 in GM’s North American region. GM, already one of the leading users of renewable energy in the North American manufacturing sector, has renewable energy resources representing about 2 percent of its energy usage.
“General Motors has a corporate commitment to making our vehicles and our facilities energy efficient, and we have a long history of energy reduction efforts at our plants,” said Elizabeth Lowery, GM vice president, Environmental Energy.