Incorporating 54,000 square feet of cold storage, using high-performance environmentally-friendly systems, the entire building claims to have reduced energy use by 30%, compared to typical buildings of the same size. Totally powered by renewable energy, the building avoids four million pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions annually. Its motion-activated water sensors and flow controls reduce water use by more than 40%.
Noting the award, Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO, founding chair of the U.S. Green Building Council, noted, "UNFI is to be commended for achieving LEED Gold certification. This facility is one that both the community and its customers can be proud of. It is a showcase as a high-performance, energy-efficient distribution center, and an inspiration for others."
Among other successful efforts at the Ridgefield DC has been reduction of more than 50% of irrigation needs by simply choosing plants native to the Portland area, and in the use of low or zero VOC materials selected for paints, carpets, adhesives and furniture.