The Disney company is seeking to enhance its reputation as an environmentally-sensitive business by developing a massive solar installation in Florida. The Disney solar facility won’t be used to power the entertainment giant’s resort, however, but to feed into the local electricity grid.
The theme parks are located just outside Orlando, in Orange County in central Florida.
The solar farm has the capacity to:
- Generate enough solar energy to power 10,000 homes each year.
- Reduce carbon emissions by over 50,000 tons annually. This is the equivalent of taking more than 9,000 cars off the roads.
- Contribute towards Disney’s wider plan to reduce its emissions worldwide by 50% on 2012 levels by 2020.
It should also help cement the company’s brand image as a socially and environmentally responsible global citizen.
Disney solar facility feeds into corporate sustainability plan
The giant solar power facility forms just one part of Disney’s overall sustainability plan. The company commitment to “environmental stewardship” focuses on the sensitive and wise use of resources. It aims to achieve zero net carbon emissions long-term while reducing water use wherever possible.
Another goal of Disney’s environmental stewardship plan is to achieve zero waste output by 2020. It plans to do this by incorporating waste reduction into the design of products and facilities, and through recycling programs.
Disney is also involved in many sustainability and renewable energy projects across the globe. These include:
- Central Florida: a 5 MW, 48,000 solar-panel facility shaped like Mickey Mouse’s head.
- Tokyo Disneyland: an electric light parade powered by solar panels on eight rooftops.
- California Disneyland: Adventure Park powered by 1,400 high-efficiency solar panels.
- Paris Disneyland: two theme parks and a hotel powered by geothermal energy.
- Shanghai Disneyland: a heating and cooling plant powered by energy partly created from waste.
- Cruise ships: Disney is building three cruise ships to run on natural gas.
The company claims to have already reduced its global emissions by 41 per cent in 2017 – making the 50 per cent by 2020 target look very achievable.
Disney’s projects showcase just what installing solar panels can achieve. This includes not only lowering emissions of course but also potentially saving a packet on electricity bills – just what Mickey and Minnie need!