Closed Doors Can Help Save the World

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Pedestrian Shops, a locally owned and operated shoe retailer, posted the following notice of a new energy policy with climate-changing implications on their shops today: Closed doors can help save the world

Pedestrian Shops, a locally owned and operated shoe retailer, posted the following notice of a new energy policy with climate-changing implications on their shops today: Closed doors can help save the world.

Beginning today, August 8, 2008, the Pedestrian Shops are keeping their doors closed to save energy.

The locally owned shoe stores will operate with closed doors when their air-conditioning or heat is on, keeping the cold -- or in the winter, warm -- air from escaping into the outdoors.

"Conventional retailer thinking is that open doors are welcoming while closed doors turn away customers," said Richard Polk, president of the family-owned Boulder business. "We believe our customers want us to conserve energy and keep the inside of our stores comfortable rather than keeping the doors open.

"This simple policy can save a huge amount of energy and money, while preventing tons of climate-changing carbon from entering our atmosphere each year."

Polk urged other businesses to follow The Pedestrian's lead and keep their doors closed.

According to a recent survey by the Long Island Power Authority, as many as 65 percent of retail stores kept their doors open when temperatures were above 80 degrees
(see http://www.lipower.org/newscenter/pr/2006/082406_survey.html ).

Twenty to 25 percent of the electricity they consumed was found to have resulted from keeping their doors open, with air-conditioned cool air spilling onto the sidewalks. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that more than a half-billion tons of carbon enters the atmosphere each year from operating heating and cooling systems in the United States.

It is likely that retailers' use of simple, low-cost strategies like the Pedestrian Shops' can reduce the national carbon footprint by as many as a hundred million tons, Polk said. Internationally, climate-correcting hundreds of millions of tons are a possibility.

The Pedestrian Shops have been selling the world's most comfortable brands of shoes since 1969. Their green business practices include shoe drives to help those in need, Eco-pass employee bus passes, wind energy, high efficiency lighting and recycling. Recently Pedestrian began operating a 10Kw solar power plant that produces electricity equal to 50 percent of the needs of their office, warehouse and largest shoe store, while preventing 27,000 pounds of carbon from entering the atmosphere every year.

For more information, see http://www.comfortableshoes.com/blog.

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E. RICHARD POLK
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