Along with energy-efficiency initiatives, low-carbon energy is an important part of our approach to reducing GHG emissions from electricity consumption. We leverage low-carbon energy sources as well as carbon offsets2 in our efforts to reduce emissions from our global corporate GHG inventory.
Renewable and Low-Carbon Energy
As a global company, we operate in many different energy and renewables markets. Opportunities for using renewable energy vary greatly from country to country and even within regions. Additionally, for TJX, onsite, renewable electricity-generation opportunities are limited as we typically do not build or own our stores. We have regional strategies to support our efforts, and subject matter experts review opportunities, deal structures, and procurement strategies that are currently available in their local marketplaces. They continue to evaluate alternative energy solutions and purchasing opportunities for our facilities, taking into account the economic and operational feasibility of projects. Some examples of our current sourcing strategies include:
Wholesale power purchase agreements
On-site power purchase agreements
Electricity supply contracts
Renewable energy credits
In 2019, we sourced over 290 million kilowatt-hours of renewable energy in total, generated from a variety of technologies. In the U.S. and Canada, our approach to renewable energy includes installing solar panels on select buildings, contracting with utilities for renewables, and purchasing renewable energy credits from national, new-renewable facilities. Our renewable energy strategies and low-carbon energy purchases in 2019 enabled us to reduce our Scope 2 market-based GHG inventory by more than 150,000 metric tons of CO2e.
TJX leases the vast majority of its stores, which limits our ability to generate renewable electricity on a broader scale. However, we have found opportunities in distribution centers that we own, and in other buildings where market conditions and landlord partnerships enable projects. In the U.S., specific efforts include solar panels installed on the roofs of select stores in New Jersey, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, and California and distribution centers in Arizona, Connecticut, and Nevada. We have seen positive results at our distribution centers in Phoenix and Tucson, where solar panels power about 35% and 20%, respectively, of the distribution center’s electricity consumption saving significant energy and an estimated $550,000 each year. We have also designed the roofs on our newer distribution centers to accommodate solar panels and have evaluated the potential for future use of solar panel installations at distribution centers and home offices. We believe these efforts position us well to expand our solar projects where it makes sense for the business in the future.
In Canada, in 2019, we purchased renewable energy credits that reduced our Canadian electricity-related emissions by 87%. In Europe, our processing centers in Bergheim, Germany and Wroclaw, Poland utilize onsite energy generated through solar and geothermal technologies. In Ireland and Northern Ireland, we bought 100% renewable energy, and we have committed to significant renewable energy purchases in the U.K. in the future.
For the 2019 GHG inventory, TJX Canada purchased carbon offsets to cover its remaining operational emissions, including Scope 1 and certain Scope 3 emissions (from business travel and waste), as well as Scope 2 emissions not covered by renewable energy purchases.3 For our offset purchase, we chose a Verified Carbon Standard (VCS)-certified4 project known as the Darkwoods Forest Carbon Project, located in southeastern British Columbia. The project provides multiple conservation benefits, including protecting over 150,000 acres of forest and ensuring that natural habitats for wildlife are not disrupted.