Stop & Shop said this week it would power 40 of its stores in Massachusetts and New York with Bloom Energy Servers, a new power solution it said would enable stores to retain power in the event of a grid power outage while reducing carbon emissions and other pollutants.
“Our stores are an important community resource for our customers, particularly when severe weather strikes,” said Gordon Reid, Stop & Shop's president. “Whether customers need to stock up on food, batteries, flashlights, other emergency items or even their prescription medications, we know how vital the products and services our stores provide are. These servers will not only reduce our stores’ impact on the environment but also ensure our stores can stay open when needed most.”
The solution is expected to reduce Stop & Shop’s carbon emissions footprint by more than 15,000 metric tons per year, which the company said was the equivalent of removing about 3,200 cars off of the road. Bloom Energy Servers also virtually eliminate smog-forming pollution and particulate emissions.
The Bloom Energy fuel cells deployed at each Stop & Shop store will be configured as a microgrid that can operate independently of the local electric infrastructure. Because Bloom Energy Servers receive their natural gas or biogas fuel through underground pipeline systems, they are significantly less susceptible to the impacts of extreme weather, when compared to power lines above ground.
“Clean, reliable, resilient power is critical to keeping businesses and families working,” said KR Sridhar, Bloom Energy's founder, chairman and CEO. “We’re proud to give Stop & Shop customers the peace of mind that their local stores will remain open before, during and after severe storms or natural disasters that disrupt the electricity grid.”
In addition to increasing reliability and reducing carbon emission, Stop & Shop expects the fresh water system to save over 1.6 billion gallons annually because Bloom Energy's power solution does not use conventional combustion as a part of its process.
Installations of Bloom microgrids will begin early this year with Stop & Shop stores located on Cape Cod, followed by additional stores in Massachusetts and Long Island. The Massachusetts projects are made possible through collaboration with Cape Light Compact, Eversource and National Grid, which are all sponsors of the Mass Save program.