Beginning in early to mid-2008, Minnesota-based retailer Best Buy intends to build only LEED-certified stores under the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standard. The electronics giant is one of just a handful of retailers—most notably Starbucks, Target, and Wal-Mart—that have made a company-wide commitment to sustainability. Of all 800 projects certified by LEED to date, only 50 are retail.
While Best Buy's green prototype is still in the works, the company's director of environmental affairs Brenda Mathison said the LEED-certified stores will most likely incorporate rainwater harvesting, recycled and low-VOC materials, energy-efficient lighting, daylighting, and a high-efficiency HVAC system. The retailer also plans to retrofit it existing stores with dimmable, zoneable ceramic metal halide lights and increase its container and packaging recycling efforts, according to a report in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal.