Cathedral City Mayor Kathy DeRosa and California State Senator John Benoit joined Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market CEO Tim Mason in opening the grocer’s first LEED Gold Certified store, as established by the U.S. Green Building Council and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI). LEED is the nation’s preeminent program for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.
Fresh & Easy’s Cathedral City store achieved LEED certification for energy use, lighting, water use and incorporating a variety of other sustainable strategies, such as using 90 percent recycled steel for the building’s structure. On average, Fresh & Easy stores use 30% less energy than a typical supermarket and utilize technologies like solar tracking skylights, automatically dimming lights, and LED lighting.
Fresh & Easy recycles or reuses all its shipping and display materials and uses environmentally-friendly trailers to transport food. The company is a pilot member of the LEED Volume Certification Program and has invested in a 500,000 sq-ft solar roof installation on its distribution center in Riverside, California.
“Achieving LEED Gold certification for our Cathedral City store further demonstrates our commitment to the environment and sustainable consumption,” said Mason. “Designing our buildings to use less energy is win-win: we are able to use less money which we can pass onto customers and we have less of an impact on the earth.”
“Building operations are nearly 40% of the solution to the global climate change challenge,” said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council. “While climate change is a global problem, innovative companies like Fresh & Easy are addressing it through local solutions.”
As part of the store’s grand opening festivities, Gilda’s Club Desert Cities received a $1,000 donation from Fresh & Easy. The charity, which creates welcoming communities of free support for everyone living with cancer, was selected by the store staff from neighborhood nominations made through Fresh & Easy’s website.
More information regarding Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market can be found at www.freshandeasy.com.
About LEED: The U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED green building certification system the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green. By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org.