HORSHAM, PA. — On March 24, Bimbo Bakeries USA, Inc. (BBU) announced that GreenStruxure has been engaged to design, build, own, operate and maintain on-site renewable solar energy microgrids at six BBU baking plants in California.
Under an agreement signed with GreenStruxure, an energy services company based in Andover, Mass., solar arrays and battery storage will partially power the BBU plants, providing the facilities with reduced carbon footprint, peak demand management, and optimized use of energy from the grid and its on-site system. BBU said the microgrids will generate 25% of the electricity needs for the sites, delivering a 25% cut in carbon emissions.
Chris Wolfe, senior director of environmental sustainability at BBU, said the 25% figure is specific to the six BBU baking plants in California, which are located in Montebello and Placentia in metropolitan Los Angeles; Oxnard, south of Santa Barbara; San Luis Obispo; South San Francisco; and Sacramento. BBU said the plants were chosen based on their energy intensity, rising electricity costs and to maximize the decarbonization impact.
“If you look at all six locations, we are anticipating an average of 25% of the bakeries’ electric offset with renewables,” Mr. Wolfe said.
Electric is considered a Scope 2 indirect emission as part of science-based targets, which are environmental performance targets that set to align business objectives with scientific evidence on the planet’s ability to tolerate environmental impacts.
Mr. Wolfe said Grupo Bimbo has made a commitment via RE100 (a global renewable energy initiative) to be 100% renewable on electric by 2025. BBU, he said, is already there thanks to its VPPA wind farm and renewable energy credits.
In addition, Mr. Wolfe said Grupo Bimbo and BBU are committed to being Net Zero Carbon by 2050 for all scopes (1, 2 and 3) of emissions.
“These onsite microgrids represent a key component of our diversified strategy,” he said.
Mr. Wolfe said the company is targeting a startup date for the micro grids sometime in the first quarter of 2023.
BBU said it is working with GreenStruxure to identify additional sites for deployment of the microgrid option.
“Bimbo Bakeries USA’s actions have made it very clear that they are going to lead the market when it comes to sustainability,” said Jose Lorenzo, chief executive officer of GreenStruxure. “On-site energy systems are Bimbo Bakeries USA’s key component in their diversified strategy. We launched GreenStruxure to work with companies like Bimbo Bakeries USA to bring our no hassle, modular, standardized approach to these facilities and more in the US.”
Grupo Bimbo SAB de CV and BBU have been active in advancing their sustainability strategy in recent years. In October 2021, Grupo Bimbo announced it was committed to zero carbon emissions by 2050. This commitment serves as a beacon for BBU as they sharpen their own sustainability goals and initiatives. In January, BBU joined the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Green Power partnership. The EPA program, which has 1,700 partner organizations and urges businesses to use green power to cut the environmental effects of conventional electricity use. In March, 18 of BBU’s bakeries were awarded an EPA Energy Star certification for 2021, the highest number of certifications in the baking industry and in any industrial sector with production facilities in the United States. In addition, BBU has been the EPA Energy Star Partner of the year four consecutive years.
GreenStruxure delivers on-site, zero carbon, digital, cost-effective, resilient energy for commercial and industrial buildings in the United States. The company describes itself as a leader in a new category called Energy as a service (EaaS), focusing on renewable energy microgrids and advanced digital services to help companies meet their sustainability objectives. GreenStruxure’s strategic partners include Schneider Electric and ClearGen. Schneider Electric is the company’s technology partner. ClearGen, a Blackstone company, is responsible for financing the microgrid assets developed by GreenStruxure.