Canadian Manufacturing

Outdoor retailer MEC commits to using renewable energy at all facilities

Mountain Equipment Co-op to power its operations with Bullfrog Power



MEC's 17 stores as well as its headquarters and distribution facility will now be powered by renewable energy. Ottawa's Mountain Equipment Co-op pictured.

MEC’s 17 stores as well as its headquarters and distribution facility will now be powered by renewable energy. Mountain Equipment Co-op in Ottawa pictured

VANCOUVER—Outdoor equipment retail chain Mountain Equipment Co-op is paring down on carbon emissions at all 17 of its brick and mortar shops across Canada.

The company has signed an agreement with Bullfrog Power that will see the cleantech firm provide clean electricity and natural gas to MEC’s head office, distribution centre and its existing 17 stores—as well as any of the retailer’s future adventure gear shops. With some MEC facilities signed up previously, the new deal builds on the company’s effort to kick carbon.

“Green electricity and green natural gas are environmental products that offer a proven means for MEC to reduce its carbon footprint,” Gary Faryon, MEC’s Chief Retail Operations Officer, said. “The emissions associated with powering and heating our buildings comprises a large slice of MEC’s overall footprint—a slice that is now smaller as we extend our renewable energy partnership with Bullfrog Power to cover all our facilities.”

Because of the complexities of energy infrastructure and the locations of its facilities, Bullfrog Power’s generators do not power its clients’ operations directly. Instead, the cleantech firm uses its network of wind and low-impact hydro stations to contribute as much power to the overall grid as its clients use. Meanwhile, its natural gas, sourced from a methane capture project at one of Canada’s landfills, enters the Canadian pipeline network to offset its clients’ gas usage.

Once MEC’s second-largest source of carbon emissions—behind shipping and distribution—the retailer has effectively eliminated the emissions involved in powering and heating its facilities.

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