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Levin Furniture adds solar panels to third store

SMITHTON, Pa. — Levin Furniture is adding solar panels to the roof of its Mentor, Ohio, showroom, its third location to feature the clean energy technology.

The Top 100 company, which has installed solar electric systems on two of its Pennsylvania stores since 2004, said the new 65 kilowatt system will generate almost 10% of that store's energy needs. With the move, Levin will be reducing its dependence on grid power and well as reducing carbon emissions from local power plants by 61 tons per year, it said.

The solar panels will be operational before Thanksgiving. Levin did not disclose how much it is investing in the new system.

In a release, the retailer said Robert Levin, president of the Smithton, Pa.-based company, "knows the value of solar energy is more than just reducing the electric bill; it is also about lowering the company's carbon footprint by getting energy from the sun."

The retailer's other environmental initiatives have included the replacement of more 17,000 halogen and incandescent lights with LED lamps, which it said equates to an annual reduction of 5 million pounds of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, equivalent to taking 429 cars off the road or planting 677 acres of trees.

The company has been a recipient of the James H. Hardie Award, by the Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania, recognizing a business that displays outstanding environmental stewardship.

"We are absolutely thrilled that we have been able to make such a meaningful investment in our infrastructure, which has resulted in such an immediate reduction of environmental impact and expense," Levin said in a release.

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