Wal-Mart Holds Grand Reopening of Store Featuring LED Parking Lot Site Lighting

The Wal-Mart Superstore, the first retail store to feature light-emitting diode (LED) parking lot site lighting, based on specifications developed by the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Retailer Energy Alliance, will reopen on July 15, 2009, in Leavenworth, Kansas. The Superstore will serve as a test site to determine the viability of expanding LED parking lot lights at Wal-Mart stores nationwide.

Wal-Mart is one of 43 retailers that are actively engaged in DOE's Net-Zero Commercial Building Initiative (CBI) as members of the DOE Retailer Energy Alliance (REA). REA members work with DOE and the national laboratories to advance the development and market adoption of net-zero energy commercial buildings. The alliance has attracted large and small retailers who are committed to reducing the energy costs, greenhouse gas emissions, and overall operating risks of retail businesses. The primary aim of DOE's energy alliances is to create specifications for promising energy efficiency technologies, test their viability in order to encourage use, and drive down costs.

The specifications for the LED lighting were sponsored by DOE and were developed by Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and retailers nationwide to address energy-efficient lighting opportunities. DOE's Solid-State Lighting Program provided technical assistance.

LED parking lot lighting is a new technology that has potentially enormous energy savings. LED lights are more precise in their direction, reducing waste light and limiting glare. DOE and its national laboratories predict that LED parking lot lights will reduce parking lot energy needs by more than 50% and maintenance costs by more than 80% compared to traditional parking lot lights. For retailer sites that are open 24 hours a day, traditional lights must be replaced every two years; LED lights will be replaced every 10 years on average.

For more information about CBI and the work of the energy alliances, visit the Net-Zero Energy Commercial Building Initiative Web site.

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