Golden Arches Going Green?

While on twitter this morning, I came across an interesting article from CNN Money about McDonald’s and other fast-food companies getting involved with green buildings. The golden arches have already opened two LEED certifiable stores in the US, the first in Chicago (pictured left) and second in Cary, NC. There are seven worldwide, and should be ten by the end of this year according to VP of CSR Bob Langert.

Other fast-food chains taking green initiatives are Denny’s, Chipotle Mexican Grill, and Subway. Subway already has six eco-stores and ten more in development, Denny’s has five, and Chipotle has four. The latest is in Gurnee, Illinois (pictured below)- and is LEED certified platinum. ::continue::

The Chipotle store features;
-On-Site 6 kW wind turbine producing 10 percent of store power
-A 2,500 gallon underground water cistern to harvest rainwater for irrigation
-LED lighting to conserve energy
-Highly efficient faucets and toilets
-Energy Star rated kitchen equipment
-Use of recycled drywall, recycled barn metal, and primers and paints containing fewer chemicals -Use of native plants for landscaping, requiring less watering and fertilizer

A KFCTaco Bell store in Northampton, MA (pictured below) was awarded LEED certification gold, designed to cut CO2 emissions and use 30 percent less energy and water than a conventional building.

The KFC-Taco Bell store features;
-Use of solar energy to preheat fresh air coming into the building
-LED lighting -Energy efficient kitchen and building equipment
-Use of harvested rainwater for irrigation
-Fixtures with lower water consumption rates
-Use of recycled materials for building installation and counters

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Jen Lynch is a public relations professional in New York City and a solar enthusiast. Her goal is to educate others on renewable energy technologies by working with green companies and other entrepreneurs and through writing, social media and PR. Jen is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and Martin J. Whitman School of Management. You can follow her on Twitter @jenlynch, or email her at jen.lynch@definitionbam.com.

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