The Seattle-based Starbucks Corporation has announced plans to design and construct up to 10,000 new locations that will emphasize energy-efficient and sustainable building features.
The project is expected to take 7 years to fully complete and will begin with the coffee store giant studying many of its current shops in the U.S. and Canada to look at how space is being used and to what degree the shops are energy efficient.
“We know that designing and building green stores is not only responsible, but it is cost-effective as well,” said Starbucks chief executive officer Kevin Johnson in a statement announcing the green initiative.
Johnson added that Starbucks was determined to “find ways to operate a greener store that will generate even greater cost savings while reducing impact.”
Ultimately, the company wants to move towards having its company-run stores built for LEED certification, focusing on reducing and energy usage by anywhere from 25 to 30 percent, with such locations eventually running on 100 percent renewable energy.
In embracing a greener approach to design and building, Starbucks also hopes to reduce by up to $50 million its utility costs over the next decade.
What is being called the “Starbucks Greener Stores” initiative has won the praise of the World Wildlife Fund. In a statement, Erin Simon, the director of research and development for that group, lauded Starbucks for “looking holistically at stores and their role in helping to ensure the future health of our natural resources.”
Starbucks already has more than 1,500 LEED-certified stores in operation out of its more than 28,000 locations globally.
By Garry Boulard
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