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BENTONVILLE, Ark. -- Wal-Mart's green initiatives are proving to be green, as the retailing giant said yesterday it has already surpassed its goal to sell 100 million compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) by the end of 2007.
Over the lifetime of the CFLs, Wal-Mart estimates that these energy-saving bulbs will have the effect of taking 700,000 cars off the road, or conserving the energy needed to power 450,000 single-family homes. By changing the bulbs in an average house to CFLs, customers can save up to $350 per year, the company said.
The retailer's companywide commitment to promoting the energy-saving bulbs has included the following efforts:
-- Introducing a private label CFL at Wal-Mart under the Great Value brand that retails at four bulbs for the cost of three regularly priced brand-name CFLs;
-- Offering online orders at both www.walmart.com and www.samsclub.com, and putting an online savings calculator on the Sam's Club Web site;
-- Increasing shelf space, offering more selection, and moving bulbs to eye level for easiest access;
-- Installing interactive displays in select Wal-Mart stores to allow customers to compare qualities and styles, and demonstrating the potential savings associated with each type of CFL;
-- Working with manufacturers to lower the mercury content of the CFLs sold at Wal-Mart stores and Sam's Clubs; and
-- Partnering with Yahoo!, Lawrence Bender, the Department of Energy's Energy Star program, Environmental Defense, and others on the 18Seconds movement to promote energy efficiency.
Almost half of Sam's Club's CFL sales this year have been to its small-business members, according to Wal-Mart. A typical small business can save as much as $1,325 per year in energy costs by switching to energy-saving CFLs.
During the 100 million bulb campaign, the five states with the highest CFL sales were Texas, Florida, California, Illinois, and Ohio, Wal-Mart said.