The project is one of several initiatives that Mars has undertaken to improve the green credentials of its corporate HQ and manufacturing facilities in Hackettstown, New Jersey.
Other recent projects include the reduction of waste sent to landfills, recycling of packaging and raw material byproducts, and a lighting retrofit project to reduce electricity use.
Mars is now working with PSEG Solar Source to build over 28,000 solar panels at the site. PSEG Solar Source will own the system while Mars is contracted buy the entire output.
The solar garden is due for completion in October and once opening it will provide two megawatts of solar electric power during peak hours, which is the equivalent of about 20 percent of the plant’s peak consumption. The garden will also reduce CO2 emissions by more than 1,000 metric tons, according to Mars.
“At Mars Snackfood US we are committed to making sustainability a central component of our business and the Hackettstown solar garden is just one of the many environmental initiatives we have underway,” said Nick Hastilow, vice president of commercial, Mars Snackfood US. “This project will greatly benefit the environment and our business and we expect it will also reduce energy costs.”
Mars has also been perusing green projects at other sites. At its manufacturing plant in Waco, Texas, for example, the company took part in an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) methane gas project.
Methane gas from the city landfill is now used to power the boiler system at the plant and is expected to provide 60 per cent of the fuel requirements for the boiler over the next 25 years.