A family-owned group of eight McDonald’s restaurants is keeping the burgers hot, the shakes cold, and the lights bright — all while saving energy.
“For the average McDonald’s, utility costs are the third-highest line item on the operating budget,” said Tom Walsh, who with his brother Tim represents the third generation of Walsh family members to own and operate McDonald’s restaurants in Connecticut. “Our experience shows that you can save energy and money, while keeping your customers happy and living up to McDonald’s high standards.”
Walsh Enterprises first started working with the Connecticut Energy Efficiency Fund to revamp its Vernon/Rockville store. The company installed energy-efficient lighting everywhere, from the seating area and behind the counter to restrooms and offices. Innovative induction lighting lit the parking lot.
Walsh Enterprises also tackled refrigeration, installing new controls and temperature monitors. Connecticut Light and Power worked with vendors and suppliers to negotiate good prices for Walsh Enterprises.
The savings from Walsh Enterprise’s first energy-efficiency project: 73,263 kilowatt hours and $9,590 a year. And 50 other McDonald’s restaurants took advantage of the vendors’ good pricing to improve lighting and refrigeration in their own stores, as well.
Since that first energy makeover, Walsh Enterprises’ seven other McDonald’s restaurants have seen upgrades, as well. Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning have been improved. Old, inefficient rooftop HVAC units have been replaced with properly sized high-efficiency units featuring economizers, which pull ambient air from outside on fine spring and fall days and use that unconditioned air to cool the restaurant.
Add up all the Walsh Enterprises’ energy efficiency efforts across eight restaurants, and all told, the savings add up to more than 400,000 kilowatts of electricity annually – and over $56,000 a year.
Walsh Enterprises has shared its experience with more than 100 other owner-operators of McDonald’s. Co-owner Tom Walsh is a member of McDonald’s regional Energy Team, ran the first local Energy Summit, and covers energy topics for the Profit Team. McDonald’s presented him with a 2011 Energy All Star Award — one of three owner/operators chosen from across the country.
Walsh Enterprises continues to track monthly utility bills and weather conditions to compare energy costs from year to year, and to keep them trending lower over time. And looking ahead, the company is exploring deeper energy retrofits, considering energy management systems and more efficient kitchen equipment.
Keeping those golden arches shining bright, while using less energy—it’s a winning combo served up fresh by Walsh Enterprises.
|Annual Energy Savings (kwh/yr):||415,778|
|Total Savings ($):||$56,780|
|Total Project Cost:||$379,453|