Amazon announced a new initiative to generate clean energy by installing solar panels on its fulfillment facilities around the world. The company plans to deploy large-scale solar systems on rooftops of more than 15 fulfillment and sortation centers in the U.S. this year and is planning to deploy solar systems on 50 fulfillment and sortation centers globally by 2020.
The initial solar projects planned for completion by the end of 2017 will generate up to 41 megawatts (MW) of power at Amazon facilities in California, New Jersey, Maryland, Nevada and Delaware. Depending on the specific project, time of year and other factors, a solar installation could generate as much as 80 percent of a single fulfillment facility’s annual energy needs.
For example, solar panels installed on the rooftop of the Patterson, California, fulfillment center cover more than three-quarters of the 1.1 million square foot building’s rooftop and will capture California’s most generous resource to power the hundreds of Amazon Robotics utilized by associates at ground-level.
Amazon’s recent renewable energy projects include the company’s largest wind farm to date, located in Texas. In addition, a network of wind and solar farms in Indiana, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia are delivering energy onto the electric grid, that powers AWS data centers.
To date, Amazon has announced or commenced construction on projects which will generate a total of 3.6 million MW of renewable energy. Amazon was the leading corporate purchaser of renewable energy in the US in 2016, according to according to the 2017 State of Green Business report. Other examples of Amazon’s sustainability-focused projects include green corporate rooftops and the District Energy Project, which uses recycled energy for heating the company’s corporate headquarters in Seattle.