I don’t think it would come as a surprise to anyone that car dealerships use more than their fair share of electricity. Between the huge bright lights inside and out, the car wash, the car lifts and everything else they need to power, it can make for quite a large utility bill and an equally large impact on the environment. Honda is making an attempt to change this with a measurable incentive program that encourages their dealers to cut back on how much power they use from the grid.
First Grid-Neutral Car Dealership
As a result of this program and its participating dealers, Honda now boasts the first and only car dealership in the U.S. that is “Electric Grid Neutral”, meaning they generate as much as or more of the power they consume from on-site renewable resources. This grid-neutral dealership is called Rossi Honda and is located in Vineland, New Jersey. Reaching this goal was surprisingly simple for owner Ron Rossi to accomplish. A few years ago he installed a 223kW solar PV system that generated 90% of their energy. Adding to this last year, Rossi Honda switched their outside metal halide lamps to LED lamps that cut the energy consumption by 22%. After this switch, the solar power system now effectively generates over 100% of the dealerships power. Doing this has successfully reduced Rossi Honda’s annual on-grid energy consumption by approximately 321,000 kWh and yearly CO2 output by approximately 341,000 lbs.
Other dealerships may have thought this would be next to impossible to achieve but Rossi Honda has shown that it’s not as difficult as you would think. This will show others that with simple changes to your infrastructure you can realistically remove something as large as a car dealership from the power grid.
Honda’s Environmental Leadership Program has three designations to award to its dealers for cutting their energy consumption.
- Silver award for a 10% reduction of energy use
- Gold award for a 30% or more reduction of energy use
- Platinum award for lowering the energy consumption to zero
Since initiating this “Green Dealer” program, over 200 dealers have enrolled and 28 have received an award.
Over the past three decades Honda has been on a mission to lower the environmental impact of its products, manufacturing and logistics, and all of its various facilities that span the globe. In 2006, Honda became the first automaker to start voluntarily reducing their CO2 emissions, putting them ahead of the curve when it comes to environmental protection.