Local food retailer wins national award.

Published: Oct. 15, 2017 at 11:32 AM EDT
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A local retailer is doing their part to help the environment and getting national attention for it.

The Hanover CO-OP won a top EPA award for their environmentally friendly refrigeration system.

“The award we got was of the over 10,000 retail grocery stores in the country we produce that the highest rate of reduction from last year to this current year in our emissions,” says Tom Guillette facilities manager of the Hanover CO-OP.

The top EPA award is given to retail food stores that have partnered to reduce refrigerant emissions and decrease their impact. The EPA says those types of emissions can damage the ozone layer.

“We reduced our Refrigeration emissions by 77% which is phenomenal in our industry,” says Guillette.

It wasn't a cheap fix. The equipment was hundreds of thousands of dollars. But in the long run they say they'll be saving money and helping the environment.

The CO-OP Having a focus on the environment is one factor that keeps shopper coming back.

“It's very important that it's green and they care,” said Miriam Paygarfar of Hanover and Cathy Plunkett took the short drive from Norwich to shop in Hanover. “It's really important to me that were taking care of the world around us.”

The current system still leaks emissions into the environment, the co-op says it's at 9% emissions rate and they feel that's still too much.

“It’s very important that we understand that 9% isn't good enough,” says Guillette.

While that rate is not at the co-op's liking, it still leads the nation. The average for participants in the EPA's Green Chill program is 12 percent.