Anheuser-Busch announced May 17 the installation of a solar array on the roof of its Newark, N.J., brewery. The array of more than 3,000 photovoltaic solar panels covers 65,000 square feet and, at peak production, will be capable of covering nearly five percent of the brewery's electricity demand.
As part of the company's ongoing effort to operate with care and concern for the environment, the solar panels will produce more than 525,000 kilowatt hours annually, which is enough to power 62 average New Jersey homes for a year.
"This solar panel installation is just one more example of Anheuser-Busch's continued commitment to improving our environmental performance through alternative energy sources at our facilities across the country," said Peter Kraemer, vice president of supply, Anheuser-Busch. "When combined with the solar array at our Fairfield, Calif. brewery, we are now one of the largest users of solar power in the U.S. brewing industry."
Orion Energy Systems designed, installed and will operate, monitor and maintain the array. As part of the project, Anheuser-Busch entered into an agreement with Public Service Electric and Gas Company (PSE&G) to host a solar power plant at the Newark brewery. PSE&G will offer Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) to businesses or individuals to help offset their use of fossil fuel energy and greenhouse gas emissions.
"New Jersey is quickly becoming the No. 2 producer of solar energy in the country and Anheuser-Busch is proud to be among the leaders our state in use of this technology," said Kristopher Scholl, general manager, Anheuser-Busch Newark brewery.
Using alternative energy is nothing new to the Newark brewery or Anheuser-Busch. The Newark brewery's Bio-Energy Recovery System (or BERS) has been in place for more than 15 years, and turns the nutrients in wastewater into biogas that provides up to 15 percent of the fuel needed to power the facility's boilers. Currently, 10 of Anheuser-Busch's 12 U.S. breweries utilize BERS technology to help fuel their operations.
"Our dream is to be the 'Best Beer Company in a Better World,' which comes to life through our environmental efforts, promotion of responsible drinking and investments in our communities," said Kraemer. "Whether it's a new solar panel array or our employees' passionate support of World Environment Day in June, we are committed to making a difference and improving the world around us."
More information about Anheuser-Busch's environmental commitment is available in the company's recently released Global Citizenship Report. The report summarizes Anheuser-Busch's calendar-year 2008 and 2009 achievements in the focus areas of responsible drinking, reducing environmental impact and giving back to the community. The report is available at http://www.ab-inbev.com/global citizenship report.
"Over the past three decades, Anheuser-Busch has taken many steps to lighten its environmental impact by expanding the use of natural resources and energy. Orion is honored to support the brewer's latest efforts to generate clean, renewable solar power," said John Scribante, president, Orion Engineered Systems.
Based in St. Louis, Anheuser-Busch is the leading American brewer, holding a 48.9 percent share of U.S. beer sales to retailers. The company brews the world's largest-selling beers, Budweiser and Bud Light. Anheuser-Busch also owns a 50 percent share in Grupo Modelo, Mexico's leading brewer. Anheuser-Busch is a major manufacturer of aluminum cans and has been a leading aluminum recycler for more than 30 years. The company is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the leading global brewer, and continues to operate under the Anheuser-Busch name and logo.