Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Kohl’s Paints Their Stores Green

I don’t shop at Kohl’s and a “green marketing” message is not going to change my mind. The executives of the Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin based retailer, however, know all the “saving the world” clichés and how to use them in a marketing campaign to lure in consumers who believe they need to help the environment survive.

Kohl's Activates Largest Rooftop Solar Rollout: Today Kohl's Department Stores (NYSE:KSS) flipped the switch on a rooftop solar energy system at its Laguna Niguel store as part of the largest planned U.S. photovoltaic solar rollout to date. … At completion, Kohl's solar program will represent approximately 15 percent of California's photovoltaic installations to date.

Once completed, Kohl’s use of solar power will generate more than 35 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of renewable energy annually, the equivalent of powering an estimated 3,087 California homes. Additionally, in the first full year of operation, Kohl’s clean energy output will offset more than 28 million pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas directly linked to global climate change. Over the span of 20 years, Kohl’s solar deployment will prevent in excess of 515 million pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

I see. It is all about keeping carbon dioxide out the air because CO2 is “directly linked to global climate change’. Trouble is a direct linkage does not exist outside of computer programming. The myth being sold the public is that CO2 has additive effects or, in other words, the more carbon dioxide the more heat. The truth is carbon dioxide has a weak limited greenhouse effect which pretty much flattens out at the concentration levels that exist now. Of course, reality has very little to do with marketing.

Now if Kohl’s solar stores were to announce a merger with Whole Foods wind powered stores, perhaps then the planet would be safe for the retail green markup and the low prices at Wal-Mart will be banished into the history of failed commercial enterprises.