Local elected official letter to Walmart

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Anatoliy Gleb | Shutterstock.com

To: Mr. Doug McMillon, President and CEO, Walmart Inc., July 2022

Dear Mr. McMillon, 

On behalf of us and the millions of constituents that we represent we are writing to urge you to commit Walmart to installing solar on all viable rooftops and parking lots by 2035. 

As local elected officials, we know that businesses like Walmart play big roles in our communities’ economies and livelihoods. The public and private sector must come together to reduce global warming pollution and transition to 100 percent renewable energy. One of the best ways to do this is to install solar panels on available commercial rooftop and parking lot space. 

Big box retailers like Walmart are ideal candidates to ramp up solar energy production. With wide, flat, sunny roofs and parking lots, your stores can generate significant amounts of carbon-free solar electricity. Putting solar panels on the nation’s big box grocery and retail stores creates unique benefits for the environment, electricity customers and the large commercial businesses themselves. The benefits are: 

  • Generating clean electricity from rooftop solar panels on existing commercial buildings is good for the environment. For example, based on a 2022 report, Walmart alone could generate approximately 8,974.4 gigawatt-hours of rooftop solar electricity each year, enough to cleanly power 842,700 average American homes annually.
  • Rooftop solar power is good for the energy grid and for electricity consumers. Producing electricity on rooftops, close to where the electricity will be used, reduces losses that happen during transmission – losses that totaled 6 percent of electricity sales in 2020.
  • Putting solar panels on the roofs of all big box stores is good for business. Electricity produced by rooftop panels on the nation’s big box stores and shopping centers could offset the annual electricity use of these buildings by over 50 percent, saving these businesses approximately $8.95 billion each year on their electricity bills.

Walmart has already been a leader on clean energy. We’re excited by your company’s current commitments of 100 percent renewable energy by 2035 and zero emissions without carbon offsets by 2040. Walmart’s over 400 U.S. locations with on-site solar is another great start, but given the enormous potential and many benefits of big box solar installations, we are urging you to expand Walmart’s commitment to rooftop and parking lot solar.

Solar can power a brighter future for our cities, our country and our world. It’s high time that we embrace this renewable energy source and use our empty roofs and parking lots to generate clean electricity. We call on Walmart to continue its environmental leadership by installing solar on all viable United States locations.

Sincerely,

 

Councilmember Teresa Turk, Fayetteville, AR

Mayor Olivia Trujillo, Arvin, CA

Mayor Emmanuel Estrada, Baldwin Park, CA

Councilmember Terry Gaasterland, Del Mar, CA

Town Councilmember Bruce Ackerman, Fairfax, CA

Councilmember Justin Massey, Hermosa Beach, CA

Mayor Barbara Delglieze, Huntington Beach, CA

Mayor Alma Beltran, Parlier, CA

Mayor Ronald Kott, Rio Vista, CA

Mayor Patrick Furey, Torrance, CA

Mayor Kyle Schlachter, Littleton, CO

Mayor Luke Bronin, Hartford, CT

Councilmember Brianne Nadeau, Washington, DC

Councilmember Brian Baer, Milford, DE

Councilmember Nirmala Samaroo, Milford, DE

Councilmember Julia Pillsbury, Dover, DE

Commissioner Angelo Castillo, Pembroke Pines, FL

County Councilmember Rebecca Villegas, Kailua Kona, HI

County Councilmember Holeka Inaba, Kona, HI

Councilmember Maile David, Hilo, HI

Mayor James Brainard, Carmel, IN

Mayor John Dennis, West Lafayette, IN

Mayor Jared Nicholson, Lynn, MA

Mayor Susan Harrison, Pocomoke City, MD

Councilor Jonathan Anderson, Scarborough, ME

Vice Mayor Don Cooney, Kalamazoo, MI

Mayor Pamela Hemminger, Chapel Hill, NC

Mayor TJ Cawley, Morrisville, NC

Mayor Jacqueline Sergent, Oxford, NC

Mayor Walter Eccard, Town of Shallotte, NC

Selectman Brett Gagnon, Hudson, NH

County Legislator Carolyn Delvecchio Hoffman, Rochester, NY

County Legislator Susan Huges-Smith, Rochester, NY

County Legislator Mercedes Vazquez Simmons, Rochester, NY

Councilmember Mitch Gruber, Rochester, NY

Mayor Steve Patterson, Athens, OH

City Councilmember Samuel Crowl, Athens, OH

City Council President Christine Knisely, Athens, OH

City Councilmember Alan Swank, Athens, OH

City Councilmember Ben Ziff, Athens, OH

Mayor Bill Snavely, Oxford, OH

City Council President Sean Brennan, Parma, OH

State Representative Ken Helm, Beaverton, OR

State Senator Michael Dembrow, Portland, OR

Mayor Ope Niemeyer, Brookings, SD

Councilmember Trisha Butler, Clarksville, TN

Councilmember Karen Reynolds, Clarksville, TN

Councilmember Wanda Smith, Clarksville, TN

Councilmember Seema Singh, Knoxville, TN

Councilmember Gloria Hausser, Nashville, TN

Councilmember Jeff Syracuse, Nashville, TN

Mayor Pro Tem Alison Alter, Austin, TX

State Senator Sarah Eckhardt, Austin, TX

State Representative Vikki Goodwin, Austin, TX

State Representative Donna Howard, Austin, TX

Councilmember Vanessa Fuentes, Austin, TX

Councilmember Natasha Harper-Madison, Austin, TX

State Representative Michelle Beckley, Carrollton, TX

State Representative Erin Zwiener, Driftwood, TX

State Senator Cesar Blanco, El Paso, TX

Mayor Sylvester Turner, Houston, TX

City Councilmember and Chair of Public Safety & Homeland Security Abbie Kamin, Houston, TX

State Representative Penny Morales Shaw, Houston, TX

State Senator John Whitmire, Houston, TX

State Representative Ron Reynolds, Missouri City, TX

Councilmember Ana Sandoval, San Antonio, TX

State Senator Roland Gutierrez, San Antonio, TX

State Senator Jose Menendez, San Antonio, TX

Mayor Lynne Robinson, Bellevue, WA

Councilmember Elizabeth Ricketts, Charles Town, WV

Councilmember David harshbarger, Morgantown, WV

Councilmember Jeff Gieseke, New Martinsville, WV

Tell Walmart to go solar
Workers doing rooftop solar installation

Clean energy

Tell Walmart to go solar

To protect our communities and the future of our planet, we must move off of fossil fuels, and businesses have a big role to play in that transition.

SIGN THE PETITION

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Johanna Neumann

Senior Director, Campaign for 100% Renewable Energy, Environment America

Johanna directs strategy and staff for Environment America's energy campaigns at the local, state and national level. In her prior positions, she led the campaign to ban smoking in all Maryland workplaces, helped stop the construction of a new nuclear reactor on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay and helped build the support necessary to pass the EmPOWER Maryland Act, which set a goal of reducing the state’s per capita electricity use by 15 percent. She also currently serves on the board of Community Action Works. Johanna lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, with her family, where she enjoys growing dahlias, biking and the occasional game of goaltimate. 

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