The Big-Box Efficiency Project

The Big-Box Efficiency Project is evaluating the impacts of installing an integrated suite of precommercial energy efficiency technologies on utility costs, human comfort, operational efficiency, water consumption and maintenance costs. Specifically, the project will assess, install, test, measure and demonstrate the effectiveness of the technologies with the goal of achieving at least a 20% reduction in electricity consumption. The multiyear project spanning Q1 2018-Q1 2022 is a partnership between the California Energy Commission (CEC), Walmart, Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE), Southern California Edison (SCE), and other key partners.

Predicting the technical and financial performance of energy efficiency technology packages is complicated. This is due to a combination of factors, including untested interactive effects and unproven savings benefits of precommercial technologies. The objective is to model and test the technologies to create a blueprint for big-box retail stores across California with similar end‐use and system characteristics.

Project & Team Details

Big box energy efficiency technology test site


Big box energy efficiency technology test site

The Test Site

The technology test site is an existing 24‐year‐old, 134,285-square-foot Walmart Supercenter located in Covina, California, in Southern California Edison’s service territory.


Project Rollout

The project is currently in the second phase of construction and will start the measurement and verification period in Q2 2021.

Q1 2018
Project Kick-off
Q1 2018
Site characterization
Q3 2018-Q4 2019
Technology designs
Q1 2019-Q3 2019
Baseline energy measurement and energy modeling
Q1 2021 - Q2 2021
Construction period
Q3 2021 – Q4 2021
Post-construction energy measurement and verification
Q1 2021 – Q1 2022
Technology/knowledge transfer activities

How are we achieving these benefits?

See the technologies


The Benefits

The project will directly impact Walmart’s future store specifications that can be replicated and deployed in other buildings across California with similar end-use and system characteristics. Additionally, through a partnership with Southern California Edison, the findings from this project will be included in their statewide Integrated Demand-Side Management (IDSM) portfolio development. Additional benefits include the following:

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