New partnership with Sainsbury’s to help reduce its carbon footprint

New partnership with Sainsbury’s to help reduce its carbon footprint

Innovative research and engineering solutions for making the consumer retail sector more energy-efficient - <em>News</em>

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Wednesday 17 March 2010
By Natasha Martineau

Imperial and Sainsbury’s have announced a partnership to work together over the next five years to inform the delivery of Sainsbury’s plans for future stores.

The partnership aims to research and deliver innovative and practical solutions to mitigate the future impacts of climate change and help Sainsbury’s reduce its carbon footprint. The work involves Imperial researchers from the Faculty of Engineering and the Grantham Institute for Climate Change.

Plans are underway for how Sainsbury’s stores in the future might provide heat and recycled water to customers’ homes, as well as help customers to manage their waste streams. Other initiatives include the use of smart grid technology to help reduce Sainsbury’s energy demand, with the potential for eventually taking stores completely off grid.

Neil Sachdev, commercial director for Sainsbury’s, said: “We are delighted that Imperial College London is working with Sainsbury’s in this partnership – one that our customers will see in the form of unique ‘future stores’. The challenge of climate change needs bold leadership but ultimately it is action that counts and I am eager to see this relationship bear real fruit.”

The collaboration aims to deliver real outputs and provide the partners with a commercial legacy; the intellectual property of any products or research jointly developed will be commercially owned by the partnership.

The new partnership: (L to R) Brian Hoskins, Neil Sachdev, John Ashford (Sainsbury's Head of Engineering) and Nilay Shah

Commenting on the collaboration, Professor Sir Brian Hoskins, Director of the Grantham Institute, said: “This new partnership will bring cutting edge research to mitigate some of the most pressing climate change issues in the consumer retail sector. I welcome the opportunity to work with Sainsbury’s, and look forward to the advances that they can make with our input.”

Professor Nilay Shah from Imperial's Department of Chemical Engineering said: “As a team, we plan to work together on using engineering to develop new low-carbon store concepts, and help ensure that business is well positioned to respond to the effects of climate change.”

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