Kerry Supervalu Store Spearheads Environmental Change With Solar Panels

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Daniel Murphy, Cost and Sustainability Manager with Musgrave and of the new solar panels on the roof of the SuperValu Ballybunion store.

A NORTH Kerry supermarket has made great strides in energy conservation and in turn helped out local community centres.

Supervalu Ballybunion teamed up with the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) this year to help to spearhead environmental change in both the Irish retail sector and their local community through the ‘Building Sustainable Communities’ initiative.

In partnership with the SEAI, a number of community upgrade projects were completed, with 10 stores across Ireland participating in the initiative.

The initiative called on SuperValu Ballybunion to identify and upgrade areas of their own operations which could be made more energy efficient, in keeping with high standards of energy efficiency and renewable energy usage.

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It also enabled them to identify community buildings in their area to donate funds and enable them to upgrade their facilities. The overall objective of this initiative is to reduce energy costs, fossil fuel usage and greenhouse gas emissions year on year.

Under this scheme, the store had brand new solar PV panels installed on the roof. This installation led to energy usage reductions of over 67,000 KWH. This is equivalent in energy terms to powering 16 houses per year in the local community.

Speaking in relation to their participation in the scheme, SuperValu Ballybunion owner Cormac Cahill said:   “This was a hugely successful partnership with the SEAI for us and we’re delighted with the results so far. To be able to see the positive impact of this initiative in our local community is brilliant and we look forward to continuing to work towards a more sustainable SuperValu Ballybunion over the next 12 months.”

SuperValu Ballybunion also nominated Ballybunion Community Centre and Ballybunion Leisure Centre as their partner community groups, so that they too could become more energy efficient.

As a result of the initiative, funding was provided to Ballybunion Leisure Centre for a new pool cover which led to an annual saving for the centre of €6,270 on their energy bills.

Funding was also provided to Ballybunion Community Centre for the installation of a heat pump as well as an LED lighting upgrade. This contributed to €3,400 in savings for the local community centre.

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