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For the seventh consecutive year, Raley’s store in Petaluma, Calif., earned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) GreenChill Partnership’s Gold Level certification. As the only store in the nation to receive continuous GreenChill Gold re-certification since 2009, Tom Land, manager of EPA’s GreenChill Partnership, said: “Raley’s should be very proud of the accomplishment. People want to do business with stores that share their environmental values. By dedicating itself to GreenChill standards, Raley’s demonstrates to its customers and communities an interest in saving our earth’s ozone layer and fighting climate change.”
Raley’s joined the EPA’s GreenChill Partnership in 2009 and has voluntarily reduced its emissions rate by more than 10 percent. Raley’s GreenChill pilot store, located in Petaluma, Calif., was the first in the state and just second in the nation to receive GreenChill Gold Level Certification for innovative refrigeration technology.
Since 2009, other Raley’s/Bel Air/Nob Hill locations in San Jose, Tracy and Benicia, Calif., have also been recognized by the GreenChill Partnership for advancements in high-efficiency refrigeration systems.
“Refrigeration in grocery stores is the largest use of energy and has the most impact on our environment,” said Meg Burritt, director of wellness and sustainability for the W. Sacramento, Calif.-based Raley's. “The ‘older’ refrigerants used in stores cause the highest amount of damage to the ozone. At Raley’s, we have moved forward in replacing over 90 percent of older ozone depleting refrigerants. Our Petaluma store is one of our flagship stores that is not only energy efficient but is also a hybrid system that has reduced its refrigerant load by 75 percent and added a secondary refrigerant that does not damage the environment at all.”
The GreenChill Partnership estimates that refrigerants commonly used in supermarket refrigerant systems can be as much as 4,000 times worse for climate change than carbon dioxide, with a typical supermarket leaking about 1,000 pounds of harmful refrigerant gases into the atmosphere every year. GreenChill partner stores have much lower leak rates. Raley’s Petaluma store’s system, which was designed by Raley’s, has had no leaks of refrigerant in seven years.
Raley's Family of Fine Stores operates 126 stores in northern California and Nevada under four banners: Raley’s Supermarkets, Bel Air Markets, Nob Hill Foods and Food Source.