Given that Florida is the Sunshine State, it's semi-puzzling that Floridians don't have a wider array of solar-powered stuff. Shouldn't like everything be fueled by that burning ball of gas that keeps us all in killer tans?
Well, at least one company is committed to harnessing the power of the sun: IKEA. The furniture giant just finished installing South Florida's largest solar array atop their soon-to-open Sweetwater store.
Add the new addition to Ikea's rooftop arrays in Orlando, Tampa, and Sunrise, and this means Ikea is Florida's largest non-utility solar owner.
As far as technical specs, according to Ikea, "the 178,000-square-foot solar array consists of a 1,178-kW system, built with 4,620 panels, and will produce approximately 1,738,876 kWh of electricity annually for the store, the equivalent of reducing 1,227 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) - equal to the emissions of 256 cars or providing electricity for 169 homes yearly (calculating clean energy equivalents at www.epa.gov/cleanenergy/energy-resources/calculator.html)."
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The installation is the 40th solar project for IKEA in the U.S, and they've announced their commitment to being energy independent by 2020. In total, they've installed more than 550,000 solar panels on buildings globally and own/operate approximately 157 wind turbines in Europe and Canada, with 49 more being built in the U.S.
Now the rest of the nation just needs to follow suit.
(Oh, and in case you were wondering, the new IKEA, Dolphin Mall adjacent, is 416,000 square feet and will have 1,500 parking spaces.)