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25 Jan 2011 11:01:41

Energy display screens cut Tesco's costs

Retail giant Tesco is cutting carbon footprint and energy costs by engaging its staff with energy display screens.

Tesco will install touch screen energy boards in 500 locations across the UK, following a test programme in nine stores. The staff areas of each store will have energy boards displaying which sections, such as the bakery, petrol station, lighting or heating, are consuming the most energy.

This is the first time energy display screens have been used in a supermarket to cut carbon emissions, and Tesco has won an international award on the back of it.

The energy display screens work by showing the parts of the store that are using the most energy on the monitor boards. By letting staff know which areas are using the most power, they can adapt so that the area does not consume as much power.

When the energy display screens were put in place in Tesco’s Portsmouth store, the monitor showed high energy use at the petrol station. Staff at the store were able to cut the station store's energy use by reducing the lighting during the day.
The total energy consumption dropped by 2-3% after the test run at nine Tesco stores

The total energy consumption dropped by 2-3%, after the test run at the nine stores were the test took place. Tesco described the cut in energy costs as "a huge margin" for one piece of equipment. The new energy display screens will have the potential to prevent the release of an additional 23,000 tonnes of CO2, the company said.

Not only do the energy display screens get employees involved, but also Tesco said they helped to further reduce the stores’ carbon footprint by removing the need for reams of paper data that detail the store’s energy consumption.

Richard Lee, head of Energy at Tesco, said: "This is an exciting development in Tesco’s long term plans to reduce the carbon footprint of its stores by 2020 […] The energy boards also present a visual snapshot of the data, which is far more meaningful that reams of paper based data and empowers people to actively promote energy saving."

Tesco recently won the 'Energy Efficiency Programme of the Year – Commercial End-User' award at the Platts Global Energy Awards in New York because of its use of the energy display screens.

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