Yesterday, Governor Jared Polis, local elected officials, and community leaders joined Amazon for an event celebrating its new robotics fulfillment center in Thornton. The event featured a tour of the 855,000 square-foot facility where more than 1,500 associates work alongside Amazon robotics on a daily basis to pick, pack and ship smaller customer items, such as books, toys and kitchenware. Guests also had the unique opportunity to see Colorado’s largest single rooftop solar installation, spanning more than 19 acres on the roof of the facility.
“Amazon’s expansion in Colorado is just another example of how our growing economy, our high quality of life, our collaborative business environment, and our commitment to attracting new companies to our state is benefitting families and businesses alike,” said Governor Jared Polis. “I am pleased to collaborate with the company to address climate change, ensure we have a high skilled workforce, and keep Colorado’s economy the envy of the nation.”
In 2017, Amazon announced its goal to host solar rooftop energy systems at 50 fulfillment network buildings globally by 2020. In July 2019, Amazon reached the goal 18 months early with the completion of its 50th rooftop solar project – with 32 in the U.S., 12 in the EU, and seven in India – for a total of 98 megawatts of installed capacity.
On-site solar systems reduce Amazon’s reliance on fossil fuels and can generate as much as 80 percent of a single fulfillment facility’s annual energy needs. At the Thornton facility, the solar panels are expected to begin generating electricity in November 2019. The 6.05MW DC system has 17,280 solar panels.
“Amazon is excited to be a part of the Thornton community and proud of our new fulfillment center, which is equipped with energy efficient technologies,” said Joe Dudek, Amazon General Manager. “This building features LED lighting, advanced building management systems, variable frequency drive equipped motors, high efficiency heating and cooling systems, and remote energy and power monitoring.”
Amazon has invested more than $1.5 billion in Colorado since 2017 through its customer fulfillment infrastructure and compensation to its teams. Amazon investments have contributed an additional $1 billion into Colorado’s GDP. Using Input-Output methodology developed by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, Amazon estimates its investments in the state have created an additional 3,500 indirect jobs on top of the company’s direct hires.
Amazon’s fulfillment network supports millions of businesses of all sizes worldwide through its Fulfillment By Amazon offering. There are more than 45,000 authors, small and medium-sized businesses, and developers in Colorado growing their businesses and reaching new customers on Amazon products and services.
Amazon provides employees with industry leading benefits – including $15/hour minimum wage, comprehensive healthcare starting on day 1, up to 20-weeks parental leave, and. Amazon’s innovative Career Choice program, which pre-pays 95% of tuition for courses in high-demand fields. To work at Amazon, interested candidates can go to www.amazon.com/denverjobs and apply online.
For more information on Amazon’s rooftop solar program, visit www.amazon.com/sustainability.