SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn., and CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The new Whole Foods Market® (NASDAQ:WFMI) slated to open in Dedham, Mass., this fall will be the first supermarket in Massachusetts to generate approximately 90 percent of its power on-site with an ultra-clean 400 kW fuel cell from UTC Power. UTC Power is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company headquartered in Connecticut.
The new 60,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market under construction at Legacy Place, Dedham, will generate approximately 90 percent of its electricity and nearly 100 percent of its hot water using fuel cell technology. This will be the second fuel cell system installed by Whole Foods Market as an on-site power source. In March of 2008, Whole Foods Market became the first supermarket in the world to generate most of its power with a fuel cell, installing a 200 kW UTC Power unit at its Glastonbury, Conn., store.
Fuel cells are one of the cleanest energy-generation sources available in the world and meet the strictest U.S. emission standards. Hydrogen and oxygen are combined in an electrochemical process to produce electricity, heat and water.
More than half of the energy potential in traditional power plants is lost to the atmosphere as waste heat or in line transmission losses. In contrast, the 400 kW UTC Power fuel cell system captures its waste energy for local cooling and heating. Whole Foods Market’s use of a fuel cell system versus a conventional power plant has carbon dioxide-mitigating benefits equal to planting more than 175 acres of trees and reductions in nitrogen oxide emissions equal to removing more than 90 cars from the roadways per year1.
“Whole Foods Market is excited to be able to use this clean and highly efficient technology at our new Dedham store to help reduce our impact on the environment and lessen our overall energy demands from traditional sources,” said Kathy Loftus, Whole Foods Market Global Leader of Sustainable Engineering, Maintenance and Energy. “We strongly believe in green power for the long term, so installing the larger fuel cell is ideal—it works with the vision of all involved, especially the community it will serve.”
UTC Power will install, own, operate and maintain the PureCell® Model 400 fuel cell system, which is also capable of providing standby power if there’s a grid failure to allow the store to operate without disruption and to avoid costly food spoilage.
The fuel cell project was approved for a $400,000 grant from the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust Large Onsite Renewables Initiative (LORI), which is a program that awards grants for feasibility studies as well as design and construction projects for qualifying renewable energy systems greater than 10 kW.
Whole Foods Market, America’s first certified organic grocer, is a mission driven company with core values that include caring about the community and environment. The Company works hard to be a leader in environmental stewardship through various environmental initiatives including in-store composting for food waste and compostable paper products, sustainable building practices and offsetting 100 percent of its electricity through renewable energy credits. Each store also has a Green Mission Team, comprised of dedicated Team Members who act as a task force to inform and improve green actions for their store.
UTC Power, based in South Windsor, Conn., is a world leader in developing and producing fuel cells for on-site power at buildings and for transportation applications. For more information, visit www.utcpower.com.