With thousands of stores and dozens of food production plants and distribution warehouses, Kroger’s direct energy and emissions footprint – and associated costs – are substantial. With a large, complex supply chain, we also have carbon impacts from the products we sell and suppliers we partner with to procure and manufacture these products.
Our goal is to achieve electricity savings of 40% by 2020 from a 2000 baseline in our supermarkets.
Our goal is to reduce refrigerant emissions by 9% in 2018 in our supermarkets.
Reducing our climate impacts is a key part of our sustainability commitment. We have a history of reducing carbon emissions intensity through investments in energy efficiency, renewable energy and refrigerant emissions measures. We continue to expand the implementation of existing solutions that have proven successful, as well as identify and evaluate new innovative technologies and collaborations that have the potential to further improve sustainability.
Our retail team is focused on driving energy efficiency in our supermarkets to meet our goal of achieving electricity savings of 40% from 2000 to 2020. Our new stores are designed with many energy efficient features, and we retrofit existing stores with relevant technologies to ensure we continue to capture energy savings across our portfolio. We also work to decrease our refrigerant emissions through leak reduction initiatives and investments in lower-carbon refrigerants.
LED Retrofits: In 2017, Kroger rolled out an extensive LED lighting retrofit project that reached more than 1,500 stores. In 2017, we saved 104 million kWh because of retrofits performed to date, and those installations will help us save 235 million kWh annually in future years. An additional 900 stores will be retrofitted in 2018 to yield additional savings.
ENERGY STAR Award Winner: Kroger received the EPA ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award in early 2018. In 2017, 325 Kroger stores achieved ENERGY STAR certification, more than any other commercial entity, bringing our total to 793 by the end of the year.
Electricity savings: In 2017, we made great progress on our energy goals in our supermarkets. We have achieved 38% electricity savings in our stores since 2000, and we reduced refrigerant emissions by 10% last year.
Kroger Manufacturing has built a strong foundation in identifying and implementing energy efficiency improvements in our manufacturing plants. Through regular goal-setting, energy tracking, collaborative leadership and internal benchmarking, our facilities can make progress on reducing energy intensity in our operations.
Our annual goal is to reduce electricity and natural gas by 3% per unit produced across our plants
The ENERGY STAR program has been a key part of Kroger Manufacturing’s energy reduction efforts. The ENERGY STAR Guidelines for Energy Management contain a step-by-step road map for continuous improvement based on best practices from the nation's leaders in energy management.
Anaerobic digester: In 2017 we installed a wastewater treatment facility at our KB Specialty Foods plant that uses anaerobic digestion to process food byproducts into renewable biogas and ultimately renewable energy for the plant. When running at maximum capacity, the digester can provide up to 30% of the plant's power.
Energy savings: As a group, Kroger Manufacturing reduced electricity use by 1.86% per unit produced and natural gas by 0.32% per unit produced. (1.82% total reduction).
Wind power: Kroger hosts the Frey Farm Wind Turbine Project at our Turkey Hill Dairy in Lancaster, Penn. Turkey Hill purchases all the wind energy produced from these turbines, which can supply more than 20% of the dairy's annual electricity needs.
Our Logistics team moves several million items across the country every day. In 2017, our fleet of 3,200 tractors and 12,000 trailers traveled almost 369 million miles to our stores and facilities.
To improve efficiency in our fleet, Kroger takes a multi-pronged approach. We replace old vehicles with newer, more efficient ones and invest in truck improvements to reduce rolling resistance and increase aerodynamics across all our driving routes. We also optimize our truck routes, limit truck speeds to make our driving behavior more sustainable, and standardize and automate efficiency measures. And finally, we invest in emerging technologies to pilot new systems to test scalability for the future.
We aim to improve fleet efficiency by 20% between 2010 and 2020.
Kroger has participated in the EPA SmartWay program for many years. The program is a voluntary, public-private partnership that helps companies like Kroger improve their transportation supply chains by using a consistent set of EPA-tested tools to make informed transportation choices. Kroger not only utilizes the SmartWay tools for its owned and operated fleet, but in every aspect of our logistics operations—inbound and outbound, local to regional.
Electric trucks: In 2017, Kroger committed to adding 10 Tesla Semi electric trucks to its distribution fleet. These trucks require lower energy cost per mile in comparison to conventional diesel tractors.
Solar power parking lot installations: In 2017, Fry’s stores in Arizona installed three solar power and shade technology solutions in their store parking lots, bringing our total to four in the Fry's division. These photovoltaic parking lot covers generate renewable solar power and provide shade cover for our customers’ cars.
improvements in fleet efficiency since 2010
Fleet efficiency: By the end of 2017, Kroger Logistics had achieved an 8.1% improvement in our fleet efficiency, which we measure as ton miles per gallon. We attribute these increases to new technologies and increasing efficiencies in how we make deliveries and operate our equipment.
Kroger’s energy management strategy includes renewable energy since we recognize the value of renewable power as means to reduce climate impacts. Collectively, Kroger's solar and wind installations generated more than 14.5 million kWh of renewable energy. We also have two anaerobic digesters that process organic waste and wastewater and produce renewable biogas as a by-product.
Carbon Emissions and Energy Consumption Trends
Reducing our carbon footprint is an important pillar in Kroger’s sustainability commitment, and we continue to invest in energy efficiency and low-carbon technologies. Kroger has measured and managed our total carbon footprint since 2006. In 2017, our total corporate carbon emissions decreased by 6%, while our total company-wide energy impacts increased just slightly (less than 1%), in part due to adding Murray's Cheese energy consumption for the first time and also due to colder weather and increased natural gas usage.
A more detailed breakdown of Kroger's energy and carbon impacts are provided in our full sustainability report download, and in our CDP Climate response.
Normalized Carbon Emissions
Our normalized carbon emissions (tCO2e per 1,000 sf) decreased by 5% from 2016. In addition, normalized emissions have decreased by about 15% since 2006 when we first started tracking our carbon footprint.