Wind turbines in southern Alberta. No word on how the freezers will stay cold when the wind doesn’t blow and sun doesn’t shine, as frequently happens in Alberta. Photo by Clive Schaupmeyer

TORONTO — Loblaw Companies Ltd. says it has reached a deal with TC Energy that will see the grocer’s operations in Alberta powered entirely by wind, sun and water.

The retailer says the arrangement is a first of its kind in Canada, providing its 280 supermarket and drugstore locations as well as its offices and distribution centres in Alberta with electricity from renewable sources.

Loblaw says the deal will eliminate the carbon emissions from the company’s electricity purchases in the province, while cutting its nationwide operating emissions by 17 per cent.

Galen Weston, chairman and president of Loblaw, says the deal reflects the company’s efforts to become net zero by 2040.

He says it will turn Loblaw’s highest carbon-emitting energy market into its lowest — in a single step.

Other large grocery retailers in Canada have set similar targets to lower carbon emissions.

Sobeys parent company Empire Co. Ltd. has said it’s working to achieve net zero by 2040 for the company’s direct and indirect emissions.

It’s also gone a step further, saying it will work with its supply chain to ensure its suppliers are also working toward reduction targets.

Metro Inc. said it aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 37.5 per cent by 2035 compared with 2020, for an average reduction of 2.5 per cent a year.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 4, 2023.

Companies in this story: (TSX:L, TSX: EMP.A, TSX: MRU).

The Canadian Press

News from © The Canadian Press, 2022. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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