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05 Apr 2011 09:04:51

John Lewis signs MoU with AFC Energy

– AFC Energy plc, the world's leading developer of low cost alkaline fuel cells, has signed a commercial memorandum of understanding (MoU) with leading retailer the John Lewis Partnership, to evaluate the economic potential of using of its fuel cell system to generate low carbon emission electricity for Waitrose supermarkets and John Lewis stores.

Following successful evaluation, the John Lewis Partnership's intention is to order and demonstrate AFC Energy's fuel cell system as part of an integrated low carbon energy generation at a Waitrose store.

The John Lewis Partnership has underlined its commitment to strong and sustainable business growth with a pledge to deliver an absolute reduction in its carbon emissions by 15 percent by the end of its 2020/21 trading year, whilst simultaneously targeting a doubling of revenue. This commitment is supported by a range of initiatives and targets covering operational emissions from energy, refrigeration and cooling, transport, waste and water. The strategy and focus is to improve the efficiency of all operations, however small, by consistently rolling out suitable and efficient technology across all branches. The inclusion of fuel cell technology will allow further renewable options to the John Lewis Partnership in support of their biomass roll out for energy self-generation.

Utilisation of AFC Energy's technology will enable large corporations to meet their Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC). As part of this long term strategic plan, the John Lewis Partnership has identified a potential 200,000 tonnes reduction in carbon emissions by taking 150 stores off the electricity grid to generate their own electrical and thermal energy.

Ian Balchin, deputy chairman, AFC Energy, commented: "AFC Energy and the John Lewis Partnership have the opportunity to demonstrate a revolutionary solution to distributed low carbon energy. Together we will be able to translate growing demand for low carbon solutions into real-terms cost reduction. I look forward to the prospect of progressing our mutual commitment beyond the MoU."

Toby Marlow, engineering manager, John Lewis Partnership, commented: "The John Lewis Partnership has identified the potential of AFC Energy as a key partner in our efforts to reduce emissions as we continue to expand. Their alkaline fuel cell gives us the opportunity to make clean electricity on site: it is a revolutionary prospect with exciting potential. This first demonstration could be the beginning of a mutually beneficial long-term relationship."

AFC Energy's alkaline fuel cell has the capability to significantly reduce carbon emissions for commercial buildings. An integrated system powered from bio-methane with carbon capture and storage offers the ultimate prospect of carbon negative energy generation.

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