IKEA Upping the Solar Game in Kansas with the State’s Largest PV Array

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IKEA announces plans for a solar array atop its new Kansas store. At 869.25 kW, the solar PV installation will be the largest in the state.

Furniture giant IKEA today announced plans to build the largest rooftop solar array in the state of Kansas. Pending permits, rooftop panel installation will begin next month on the company’s Kansas City-area store in Merriam, and be complete before the store’s opening in the fall of 2014.

The 869.25 kW system will consist of a 92,000-square-foot solar array built with 2,850 panels. The system is expected to produce 1,348,000 kWh of electricity annually for the store. That’s the equivalent of offsetting 930 tons of CO2 or eliminating 196 cars from the roads and is enough electricity to power 128 homes a year.

 

Commercial solar developer Core Energy, based in Chicago, will develop, design, and install the customized solar power system.

 

IKEA Merriam will be the second IKEA store in the U.S. with a geothermal component to its heating and cooling system. Incorporating geothermal and solar will significantly reduce the energy IKEA Merriam will draw from the power grid.

 

“We are excited about furthering our sustainability commitment with solar panels on the future Merriam store,” said Rob Parsons, IKEA Merriam store manager. “As is the case with geothermal, solar energy will reduce greatly the new store’s energy needs and carbon footprint as well as contribute to our vision of creating a better everyday life for the many.”

 

IKEA is not new to solar power. This installation is the 41st solar project for IKEA in the U.S., where the company has solar installations on nearly 90% of its locations, for a total generation goal of 40 MW. IKEA is one of the biggest commercial solar adopters in the country. With this new installation, it’s giving a boost to solar power in Kansas that will likely bring more visibility to the technology there.

 

IKEA owns and operates each of its solar PV energy systems and globally has allocated $1.8 billion to invest in renewable energy through 2015, reinforcing its confidence and investment in solar PV technology. Consistent with the goal of being energy independent by 2020, IKEA has installed more than 550,000 solar panels on buildings across the world and owns approximately 157 wind turbines in Europe and Canada, with 49 more being built in the U.S.