SunPower has announced completion of a 8.79 MW solar system spanning across four parking garages at Toyota Motor North America’s new 100-acre headquarters in Plano, Texas. The vertically integrated solar company notes it finished the “Texas-sized” project in under six months, and the project helped Toyota meet a major sustainability goal.
“Toyota’s new campus serves as a model for corporate sustainability and an inspiration for others looking to reduce their own carbon emissions and environmental footprints,” says Nam Nguyen, SunPower executive vice president. “With SunPower’s carport solutions, our experienced design and construction teams delivered long-span, garage-top solar canopies that fully incorporate the Plano site’s unique structural conditions.”
The solar installation marks an important step toward meeting Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050, which aims to eliminate carbon emissions in the company’s operations. In an effort to achieve LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USBGC), Toyota designed its Plano campus for sustainability, focusing on energy planning for emissions reduction, sustainable landscaping and repurposed rain water for water conservation, and recycling.
To meet its goals in energy planning, Toyota selected SunPower to install more than 20,000 of its E-Series solar panels. SunPower says its E-Series panels are Cradle to Cradle Certified Silver, which demonstrates a product’s quality based on rankings in five categories: material health, material reutilization, renewable energy use, water stewardship, and social fairness.
By installing E-Series panels, Toyota is not only able to meet approximately 33% of its on-site energy needs with solar, but also had a significant advantage in reaching its LEED Platinum goal, achieved for its new campus as announced just last month. Cradle to Cradle certification helps maximize the number of LEED credits that could be earned for a solar system. On typical commercial projects, SunPower says, its panels help contribute up to 35% of the credits required for LEED certification.
“At Toyota, we demonstrate our commitment to sustainability, our culture of respect, and continuous improvement in everything that we do, whether its designing a new car or our new campus,” says Doug Beebe, general manager of Toyota’s real estate and facilities/corporate security and fire services for North America. “Thanks in part to SunPower and their products and capabilities, Toyota’s headquarters campus achieved LEED Platinum certification – something that we know our team and community are proud of.”
This represents Toyota’s fourth solar project completed with SunPower.