Jul 15, 2014

Top 10: U.S. Retailers Using Green Energy

Green Energy
Top 10
3 min
10. Safeway, Inc. Safeway, Inc. is one of the largest food and drug retailers in the U.S., operating 1,630 stores under name...

10. Safeway, Inc.

Safeway, Inc. is one of the largest food and drug retailers in the U.S., operating 1,630 stores under names such as Vons, Tom Thumb, and Safeway. Winner of the Green Power Leadership Award in 2005, Safeway has taken several steps toward becoming even more sustainable. 100 percent of its gas station retail stores are powered by third-party renewable electricity.

9. Best Buy

One of the States’ largest consumer electronics retailers, Best Buy uses 133,333,000 kWh of green energy annually. The company is also aiming to reduce its emissions in North America, setting a goal of 20 percent reduction by 2020.

8. Ahold USA

Dutch company Ahold is relatively new to the states, expanding internationally in the late ‘90s, but they’ve definitely made their mark in green energy consumption. The parent company of several supermarkets, it uses 155,985,720 kWh of green energy annually.

7. Sprint

Sprint is a major advocate for the use a sustainable energy and green power. The company utilizes 176,004,679 kWh of green energy annually and hopes to reduce emissions 20 percent by 2017. Also, CEO Dan Hesse has taken a leadership role in green energy advocacy and the company actively lobbies for wind energy tax credits.

6. McDonald’s USA

Winner of the Green Power Leadership Award for 2012, McDonald’s USA is committed to using at least 30 percent renewable energy for its company-owned restaurants. McDonald’s uses 309,185,000 kWh of green energy annually and is committed to reducing its energy consumption at the corporate level, as well.

5. Starbucks (Company owned stores)

Starbucks recognizes that its energy use is the single biggest impact the company has on the climate. It’s already a large consumer of renewable energy though, using 582,520,523 kWh annually, making up 67 percent of its total energy consumption. Starbucks wants to power 100 percent of its stores using Renewable Energy Credits by 2015.

4. Staples

Staples has received numerous awards for its usage of green energy, including the Sustained Excellence in Green Power Award in 2013. Staples utilizes 635,951,792 kWh of green energy, which is 106 percent of its energy consumption. This extra percentage comes from the fact that Staples has 36 on-site solar installations for some of its stores.

3. Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart is a leader in corporate sustainability. Winner of the 2009 Green Power Leadership Award, Wal-Mart utilizes 650,716,703 kWh of green energy annually. With more than 10,000 stores worldwide, however, this usage only amounts to 3 percent of the company’s total energy consumption.

2. Whole Foods Market

Not surprisingly, a grocery store that is committed to healthier, locally-sourced food is also heavily invested in sustainable energy. Winner of countless awards for its efforts, Whole Foods uses 800,257,623 kWh of green energy annually, accounting for 107 percent of its total energy consumption. The company has a Green Mission Leadership Team, which helms its sustainable business practice research and implementation.

1. Kohl’s Department Stores

The amount of awards Kohl’s has won for its sustainable business practices is impressive. Even more impressive is that the company utilizes 1,536,529,000 kWh of green energy annually, account for 105 percent of its total energy consumption. The company has three specific strategies for keeping its business in the green: focusing on sustainable operations, engaging stakeholders, and keeping its supply chain sustainable. 



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Mar 20, 2020

Top 10 ways to prepare for COVID-19

Georgia Wilson
3 min
Energy Digital sets out Gartner’s Top 10 ways organisations can prepare for a pandemic, via effective operational risk management
Energy Digital sets out Gartner’s To...

Energy Digital sets out Gartner’s Top 10 ways organisations can prepare for a pandemic, via effective operational risk management. 

As the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to develop, many businesses are left uncertain as to whether their risk mitigation plan is sufficient. 

In a recent webinar conducted by the research and advisory firm just 12% of 1,500 people believe that their business is highly prepared for the impact of COVID-19, while 56% believed themselves to be somewhat prepared, and 11% believed themselves to be very unprepared. 

“Most organizations have done some pandemic planning but still have many unanswered questions about whether they have done everything they can to manage risks,” says Jim Mello, Senior Director, Advisory, Gartner. 

Establish a preparedness framework

Establish a team that represents all critical business functions. These people will report directly to executive management and are responsible for prioritising the importance of business activities and organise them in tiers for response and recovery.

Monitor the situation

It is important to ensure that organisations monitor the rate in which the infection is spreading and its severity. Many rely on the World Health Organisation for information.

Revise finance

Be sure to revise revenue forecasts and communicate with investors, as well as suppliers in regards to any potential finance issues. It is important to ensure that the business has the working capital to ride it out. 

Ways to ensure this include: working capital checks, seeking loans or government-sponsored financial relief.

Extend personal hygiene and cleaning protocols

It is important to comply with any changes to workplace regulations. In addition, it is important to establish protocols for staff returning from infected areas, as well as extending existing hygiene activities.

Review HR 

Ensure close monitoring of absenteeism rates for signs of problems. It is important to identify critical staff in order to make sure the company can continue to function in their absence and be prepared for up to 40% absentee rates.

In addition to reviewing HR policies and procedures, it is important to maintain a level of sensitivity when it comes to engaging with employees and workplace preferences. 


Establish a communication programme

People can feel out of the loop quickly. Establish a spokesperson appropriate for the situation who can maintain lines of communication. In addition, organisations should establish pre-approved messages and scripts for various stakeholders.

Review the impact on the operation

Although this may seem overwhelming, the team established to represent all critical business functions should identify key areas to consider. It is important to maintain a connection with the reality on the ground in countries affected.

Key questions to consider: is transport functioning? Have holidays been extended? Where can operation continue and where do they need to stop?

Review IT 

IT business functions tend to be relatively well-prepared for business continuity. However, it is important to assess the supply chain for critical equipment and keep extra inventory if required.

In addition, organisations should keep in mind remote data centre management and cloud options for critical systems as well as enabling remote working programs and rescheduling any non-essential IT work prioritising key applications. 

Review pandemic plans to identify any gaps in response

Conduct a preparedness exercise by validating roles and responsibilities as well as recovery requirements and procedures, in order to identify any gaps in the recover capabilities and resource needs.

Review after-action

Following the establishment of a pandemic plan, identify three lessons learned, key observations or improvements for the exercise. After establishing these organisations should priorities the short and long term follow up actions.

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