U.S. Bank helps Blue Shirts go green with new Best Buy Solar Field

July 23, 2020 | GET MORE : Social Responsibility


The Best Buy Solar Field in South Carolina. Photo credit: Best Buy.

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Both based in Minnesota, U.S. Bank and Best Buy have a long history of working together

U.S. Bank is helping Best Buy reduce its carbon footprint and meet its renewable energy goals. That help comes in the form of the new Best Buy Solar Field in South Carolina. 

The Best Buy Solar Field will produce 174,000 megawatt hours of clean electricity per year for the local power grid – enough to power the equivalent of 260 Best Buy stores for an entire year.

U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corporation (USBCDC) brought Best Buy and X-Elio together to make the project happen. USBCDC is the tax credit and community development subsidiary of the bank and provided a portion of the tax equity investment in the project. X-Elio owns and operates the solar farm. 

“This project is a major milestone for Best Buy and as our biggest commitment to renewable energy yet, illustrates the steps we are taking to combat climate change and achieve our carbon reduction goals,” said Tim Dunn, head of environmental sustainability at Best Buy. “We are excited to collaborate with U.S. Bank on this project – a company, that like us, is dedicated to positively impacting the communities they serve.”

“U.S. Bank is proud to partner with Best Buy in making solar investments that will have a positive impact on our environment for years to come,” said Chris Roetheli, senior vice president with USBCDC. “More and more companies are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint and this solar farm is a unique approach that allows Best Buy to measure the impact of its investment.”

While it’s the first solar deal U.S. Bank and Best Buy have completed together, the two Minneapolis-based companies have a long history. 

Paula Regan, who manages U.S. Bank’s relationship with Best Buy, saw an opportunity to help the company meet its sustainability goals and connected company officials with the USBCDC. 

“Best Buy and U.S. Bank have a long-standing, broad partnership,” she said, including a U.S. Bank branch onsite at Best Buy’s Minneapolis headquarters. “We’re always looking for ways we can bring the whole bank to meet customers’ goals.”

X-Elio is a worldwide leader in developing, constructing and maintaining solar energy projects for generating, transmitting and distributing electricity. They have a 15-year agreement to sell power from the farm to Dominion Energy.

“We’re excited because Best Buy is a nontraditional investor showing environmental leadership,” Roetheli said. “As more companies set sustainability goals, investments like this are a great way to tangibly measure the ways they’re reducing their carbon footprint.” USBCDC completed similar projects with Starbucks last year. 

U.S. Bank is doing our own part when it comes to environmental sustainability. We’re a national leader in financing renewable energy, financing 15% of all solar installations in the United States each year via tax equity financing, which makes communities more environmentally sustainable, and builds economic resiliency through access to affordable energy and the promotion of job growth. Since 2008, we’ve invested more than $22 billion in environmentally beneficial business opportunities, partnering with stakeholders to address climate change. 

Written by Cassie Wagner of U.S. Bank.