INDEPENDENT NEWS

Solar Energy Helps BP Meet 10% Savings Target

Published: Wed 1 Aug 2001 02:03 PM
BP is turning to solar energy in its bid to save power.
BP currently has four solar service stations in New Zealand with six more planned by the end of this year and a further 10 next year.
The first solar-powered service station opened in late 1999 in Papakura off Auckland’s southern motorway. More recently, BP added solar panels to three revamped service stations in Auckland, Christchurch and at Ngaruawahia on State Highway One.
These new solar service stations will be connected to the national grid within the next week or so to help save power.
Solar energy will provide about 10-15% of the service station’s needs through the 300 or so solar panels on the canopy roof above the fuel pumps.
In very sunny conditions, the panels produce up to a third of the service station’s power. Annually they produce about 15,000 kilowatt hours. Most households use about 5,000 kilowatt hours a year.
BP is also conserving power at its service stations through reducing lighting and switching off non essential appliances
The BP neon signs on its head office building in Wellington have also been switched off and will stay unlit until the power crisis is over. All non essential lighting in offices has been turned off and workers are ensuring they turn off their computers and lights before leaving work. Heat and ventilation levels have also been modified.
These measures will meet or exceed the government’s 10% savings target.
BP Managing Director Peter Griffiths encouraged other businesses to heed the Government’s call for 10% savings over ten weeks.
“If we all do our bit, we will get through this problem with minimal effort and without damage to our businesses or the economy.”
The decision to use solar power reflects BP’s commitment to
eco-friendly renewable energies. Today, about 400 BP service stations around the world use solar power making BP the largest private consumer of solar energy in the world.
BP is also one of the world’s largest manufacturers of solar technology.
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