CANTON (WWJ) – IKEA announced plans to install solar energy panels on five of its United States furniture store locations – including the store in Canton.

The company said installation of the panels will begin this Winter, with completion expected in Summer 2012. Implementation of these projects will extend the IKEA solar presence to nearly 85 percent of its U.S. locations.

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The Canton store, which opened in 2006, is set to receive 4,157 solar panels which will generate 1,138,200 kilowatt-hours of electricity per year. That’s equivalent to reducing 865 tons of carbon dioxide, 154 cars’ emissions or powering 98 homes yearly.

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Collectively, the five stores will total 4.8 megawatts of solar generating capacity, approximately 20,400 panels, and an annual output of 5.62 million kilowatt-hours of electricity – the equivalent to reducing 4,273 tons of carbon dioxide. That’s equal to eliminating the emissions of 760 cars or providing electricity for 484 homes yearly.

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Other stores receiving the solar upgrade include locations in Bloomington, Minn.; Pittsburgh, Penn.; and two stores in the Chicago area.