FedEx to Build California's Largest Corporate Solar Power System

FedEx to Build California's Largest Corporate Solar Power System

FedEx Corporation and the City of Oakland have announced that FedEx Express will construct California's largest corporate solar electric system atop its hub at Oakland International Airport. The 904-kilowatt solar array will provide approximately 80% of the peak load demand for the company's Oakland facility, which employs 1,700 people. Completion is expected in May 2005.

"With this project, FedEx will deliver more environmental innovation to California," said Mitch Jackson, managing director, corporate and international environmental programs, FedEx Express. "From hybrid electric delivery trucks to solar power, we are proud to lead our industry in committing to real, practical ways to reduce pollution, conserve fossil fuels, and contribute to a greener world."

"FedEx is proving that solar power works for business," said Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown. "Thanks to the vision shown by FedEx, we're adding nearly one megawatt of zero-pollution electric generating capacity to Oakland. With this project, we're well on our way to my administration's goal of adding five megawatts of solar power in Oakland by the end of 2005." The project also supports the environmental sustainability goals of the Port of Oakland, which hosts the FedEx Express hub facility.

FedEx's solar generation system will cover 81,000 square feet on the roofs of two buildings. Sunlight will be converted directly into electricity by 5,769 photovoltaic modules, comprised of more than 300,000 solar cells from Sharp, the world's leading producer of solar technology. In addition to generating electricity, the solar panels help insulate the buildings, reducing their heating and cooling costs. The global supply chain capabilities of FedEx will contribute to keeping the project on schedule. FedEx Express will fly the solar cells, manufactured in Japan, to Sharp's assembly facility in Memphis, Tennessee, to be assembled into modules. FedEx Freight will then truck the assembled modules to the Bay Area.

The Oakland solar project will be designed and built by Berkeley-based PowerLight Corporation, leading manufacturer and supplier of large-scale solar electric systems and energy efficiency services. PowerLight's local solar projects include the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

The electricity generated by the FedEx Oakland solar electric system will be the equivalent used by more than 900 homes during the daytime.

The Oakland solar project is the second major FedEx environmental innovation in California this year. In Sacramento in March, FedEx Express became the first company to make a long-term market commitment to develop and use hybrid electric delivery trucks, developed in partnership with Environmental Defense and Eaton Corporation. The FedEx OptiFleet E700 diesel-electric hybrid trucks will be rolled out in additional U.S. cities later this year.