Joel Makower, who is a very well connected soul in the world of sustainable business, has just reported that Wal-Mart has requested proposals from several large solar firms concerning the installation of a large number of solar systems in five states. Makower spends quite a bit of time emphasizing that this is not a done deal and, also, is not necessarily supposed to be public news yet. Makower himself reviewed the confidential RFP and so knows quite a lot about it.
This is exactly what Wal-Mart needs to do to meet it's goal of reducing greenhouse emissions by 30% in three years.
Makower has been informed that solar systems may be installed on as many as 340 stores. If each system produces 300 kilowatts, which is roughly half of what's possible, we could be looking at a 100 megawatt private solar project! Google's gigantic solar project, which everyone was so excited about, is roughly 1/60th that size. And the RFP calls for plans to build in 2007. They're not dawdling here.
The effects of this project on the private solar market would be significant. The effects on the stock price of the winning bidder would be equally impressive.
The biggest problem here is that there simply isn't a lot of silicon on the market right now. Wal-Mart could get the proposals back and see a much bigger price tag than their interested in. But they're moving quickly. Wal-Mart expects to notify a winning bidder on Feburay 28th. ...Bated breath here at EcoGeek.
Via Joel Makower
Wal-Mart and strong-arm tactics
written by Howard Lee Harkness, December 29, 2006
CFO of Renewable Alternative Technologie
written by Lidia Thompson, January 07, 2007
written by Russell Reynolds, July 02, 2008
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