Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.


Challenge Commitment
744Million Square Feet
Goals Progress
20%Reduction in Energy Intensity7%Cumulative (vs. Baseline)

Toward the end of 2012, Walmart announced that it met its 2005 commitment to reduce GHG emissions associated with its existing stores, clubs and distribution centers by 20 percent, one year ahead of its seven-year target. The majority of these reductions were achieved through energy efficiency. Building off of this success, Walmart’s strategy has been to leverage its size and scale to test new technologies in stores and distribution centers, building a track record of helping nascent technologies move from prototype to industry standard.

Walmart’s willingness to work with others, lend facilities and data for research, and share findings with others helps leverage the collective power of multiple stakeholders. It has formed relationships and collaborative research investigations with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and several suppliers, such as General Electric, that have led to technological developments in the lighting and buildings sector. Walmart continues this collaboration with the DOE as a Better Buildings Challenge Partner.

Walmart’s new goal is to reduce the total energy intensity per square foot (kWh/sq. ft.) of all operating facilities by 20 percent by 2020, compared to a 2010 baseline. As of the end of 2013, it is already well on its way toward this new goal by operating with 7 percent less energy per-square-foot than in 2010.

Over the past several years Walmart has completed and/or commenced implementation of numerous energy efficiency initiatives as they continued to reduce the energy intensity (kWh/sq. ft.) of their facilities worldwide. These measures included installing sales floor LED lighting, high-efficiency (HE) refrigeration units, HE heating, ventilation and air conditioning units, doors on refrigerated cases, parking lot LEDs, energy management systems, voltage optimization systems, LEDs in refrigerated cases, and retro-commissioning of buildings and HE air-handling units.

Increasing the efficiency of its facilities worldwide, requires a new level of dedication and ingenuity from its associates and suppliers. Walmart intends to accelerate efficiency worldwide by:

  • Scaling technologies: Continuing to scale and deploy market-ready efficiency technologies, leveraging its global demand to provide scale and certainty to its suppliers.
  • Transferring technologies globally: Piloting proven technologies in new geographies, store formats and customer demographics.
  • Accelerating tomorrow’s technologies: Maintaining its focus on testing and experimenting with next-generation technologies to accelerate the future of energy efficiency.

Because of the diversity in technology and facilities across more than 11,000 stores, clubs and distribution centers worldwide, Walmart has sequenced its energy-efficiency projects to focus on the greatest opportunities for energy savings. Over the past two years, the company estimates that it will have completed more than 3,500 projects. Typically, each project has a four-year or better simple payback, will reduce facility energy consumption from 1 to 3 percent and will provide an expected lifetime benefit of approximately 10 years. Specific paybacks and lifetime benefits can vary depending on country-specific factors.