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Ikea officially launched Brooklyn's biggest rooftop field of solar panels yesterday, just in time for today's storms. The display consists of 1,104 panels covering an area that's about half the size of a football field. The point isn't to power the store, but to pump energy back into the city's electric grid as a way of offsetting all the resources Ikea uses. In raw numbers, it'll generate 240,000 kilowatts annually—which adds up to the amount of electricity used by 20 homes. (The store says that in terms of environmental impact, it's as if they eliminated the emissions of 32 cars.)
This is pretty par for the course for Ikea, which has set up similar solar systems at stores in Burbank, CA, Pittsburgh, and Tempe, AZ, and is currently working on ten more. But as the Brooklyn Paper points out, Ikea's critics in Red Hook aren't impressed. Says John McGettrick, co-chairman of the Red Hook Civic Association, "This will be a miniscule way to offset the tremendous amount of pollution created by the vehicles passing through Red Hook Park on the way to the store."
· Ikea now offers fuel from meatballs — and the sun [Brooklyn Paper]
· Ikea switches on solar energy system at Brooklyn store [Furniture Today]