ON TARGETTarget Corp. announced its latest sustainability partnership by joining the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) GreenChill program.
“Target is excited to join the GreenChill partnership and extend our sustainability initiatives to the refrigeration systems in our stores,” said Dan Riley, vice president, property development operations, Target. “We are committed to reducing our carbon footprint by forging new partnerships, achieving milestones in our business, and progressing towards our sustainability goals. Today’s announcement represents an important step in reducing Target’s refrigeration emissions.”
“GreenChill is very proud to welcome Target as its latest and largest food retail partner,” said Keilly Witman, GreenChill program manager, EPA. “As Target expands its fresh food assortment throughout the nation, excellent refrigeration management will become more and more important for the company’s environmental responsibility goals. Target’s partnership with GreenChill is a commitment to the public that the company is protecting the environment during its expansion.”
In addition to SuperTarget combination supermarket/department stores, the chain has been adding food and drink products needing refrigeration to many of its Target stores originally designed for just dry goods.
An announcement from Target said the GreenChill program will help the store chain achieve its environmental sustainability com- mitments by offering several benefits, “including an industry benchmarking system and greater access to EPA research.”
In making the announcement during a press conference at the Target store in Hudson, Wis., which uses the latest refrigeration technology, Target officials joined representatives from the EPA and U.S. Rep. Ron Kind (D-Wis.) to announce the partnership.
“The GreenChill program is a great example of what can happen when businesses and the public sector work together to reduce the impact on our environment,” said Kind. “These are important steps in making real progress toward conserving energy and I’m pleased to see these solution-driven initiatives working in our own backyard.”
Target said it works with a variety of organizations to integrate sustainability throughout its business. In addition to GreenChill, Target is committed to earning the Energy Star label for at least 75 percent of U.S. buildings by 2016 and is part of the EPA’s SmartWay program to reduce transportation-related emissions. Target is also part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Retail Energy Alliance and a founding member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition that was announced earlier this year.
FARMERS MARKETAt a community welcoming event held by Sprouts Farmer’s Market’s store in Westlake, Calif., the GreenChill Partnership awarded the Sprouts store its Platinum Certification Award, EPA’s highest honor - and a California first - for green refrigeration.
“Sprouts Farmers Market is one of just three grocers in the nation to achieve platinum certification from the GreenChill Partnership,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s regional administrator for the Pacific Southwest in a May 17 announcement. “By protecting the ozone layer, this market proves that good business can be green business.”
GreenChill’s Store Certification Program recognizes supermarkets’ achievement in preventing harmful emissions with silver, gold, and platinum-level certification awards. A silver-certified store prevents at least 65 percent, and a gold-certified store prevents at minimum 75 percent of the refrigerant emissions of an average store. Platinum-level store awards are for stores certified to prevent 95 percent of an average store.
ALL 50 STATESAccording to an announcement dated May 4, the GreenChill partnership now has 7,000 partner stores located in all 50 states.
“From regional grocers like Stater Bros. in Southern California, and small health food stores like Down-to-Earth, to nationally-recognized names like Whole Foods and the newest partner Target Corp., the partnership now represents 20 percent of the supermarket industry,” the EPA said.
“GreenChill’s food retailers are reducing pollution from commercial refrigeration, decreasing their impact on the ozone layer, and protecting people’s health. Protecting the ozone layer protects people from too much ultraviolet radiation, which can lead to skin cancer and cataracts.”
“GreenChill is a great example of how businesses and government can work together to protect people’s health and the environment,” said Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “GreenChill capitalizes on industry’s drive for innovation by providing a forum for technology advances and financial savings.”
EPA launched the GreenChill program in 2007 as a way to partner with food retailers to reduce refrigerant emissions, greenhouse gas pollution and decrease their overall impact on the ozone layer. The partnership works with food retailers to transition to more environmentally friendly refrigerants, reduce the amount of refrigerant used in stores, and eliminate harmful refrigerant leaks.