Waitrose yesterday opened its greenest shop yet, close to its head office in Bracknell, Berkshire. The 25,000 sq. ft. store incorporates pioneering new features to benefit the environment and reduce carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emissions by around 80%.
It is the first Waitrose to showcase a host of biodiversity features, building on the retailer’s efforts to conserve and enhance the natural environment. Waitrose said it recognised the retail site on Bond Way as an important habitat and its new shop features a ‘green’ roof covered with wild grass to improve drainage and provide an area for wildlife. There is a ‘living’ wall to promote wildlife movement around the site, hedges instead of conventional fencing and nest boxes for bats and swifts.
There’s even a ‘bug hotel’ situated in the car park, constructed with the help of local primary school pupils to provide a safe haven for hibernating insects. The hotel is the size of a telephone box with individual ‘rooms’ inside designed to encourage different insects.
From next year, as part of its Responsible Development programme, the company said all new Waitrose shops and major refurbishments will incorporate a biodiversity action plan.
Waitrose Bracknell will also be one of two Waitrose shops to have its own on-site energy centre2 which will reduce CO2e emissions by almost 800 tonnes a year. Burning locally sourced wood chip, coppiced from Forestry Commission standard sustainable woodlands, the centre will provide the branch with all of its heating, cooling and electricity needs, in addition to producing surplus power of around 150,000 kwh which will be fed back into the national grid.
Nigel Keen, Director of Development at Waitrose said: “Throughout the design and build of our Bracknell shop our three objectives have been community, emissions reduction and biodiversity. As a food retailer, boosting Britain’s biodiversity is important to us; given the vital role that wildlife plays in the pollination of crops.
“Many of the features incorporated into the shop and car park make good business sense as they conserve the environment and help us save money. We’re keen to roll out these new features more widely, particularly the on-site energy centres which offer massive CO2e savings and will reduce the amount we spend on energy in the long-run. We are confident that our Bracknell shop will achieve the BREEAM Outstanding rating – something which we’ll be very proud of it will be one of the first retail buildings in the world to achieve this accolade.”
Source: NamNews | www.supermarket.co.za