With System Complete, IKEA Powers Up Solar Energy in Tempe, AZ

This effort represents the third active solar energy project for IKEA in the U.S. Systems are operational in Brooklyn, NY and Pittsburgh, PA and plans are underway for installing programs at eight IKEA locations in California. Also, a geothermal system has been incorporated into the store under construction in Centennial, CO.

IKEA contracted with Gloria Solar for the development, design and installation of this customized solar power system. Gloria Solar is the United States operating group focused on the photovoltaic system business within the family of E-Ton Solar Group. This project – the largest commercial installation in SRP’s service area – is being implemented as part of the EarthWise Solar Energy program of SRP, the third-largest public power utility in the country. SRP provides more than 940,000 electric customers in the Phoenix metropolitan area through a variety of resources including solar, wind, biomass, geothermal and hydroelectricity.

“We are thrilled at how this solar energy system furthers our sustainability commitment at IKEA Tempe,” said Robby Wierman, IKEA Tempe store manager. “IKEA has a never-ending job where most things still remain to be done. We constantly ask ourselves how what we are doing today can be done better tomorrow. We appreciate the support of the City of Tempe as well as SRP and Gloria Solar, our partners in this project.”

IKEA, drawing from its Swedish heritage and respect of nature, strives to be a good business while doing good business and reflects an operating model designed to minimize impacts on the environment. Other sustainable efforts include: integrating innovative materials into the production process; working with Global Forest Watch to maintain sustainable resources; flat-packing our goods for an efficient distribution system; recycling approximately 75 percent of our waste (paper, wood, plastic, etc.); and incorporating environmental measures into the construction of our buildings in terms of energy-efficient HVAC and lighting systems, recycled construction materials, low volatile organic compound emitting paint, skylights in our warehouse, and water conserving restrooms.

Located on 23 acres along I-10 near Warner Road, the 342,000-square-foot IKEA Tempe opened in November 2004 and employs approximately 250 coworkers. In addition to 10,000 exclusively designed items, IKEA Tempe presents 44 different room-settings, three model home interiors, a supervised children’s play area, and a 250-seat restaurant serving Swedish specialties such as meatballs with lingonberries and salmon plates, as well as American dishes. Other family-friendly features include a Children’s IKEA area in the Showroom, baby care rooms, preferred parking and play areas throughout the store.