Love’s Adds Solar to 3 Illinois Travel Stops

The systems will reduce energy costs, and any excess power will go into city power grids.

May 25, 2021

OKLAHOMA CITY—Three Love’s Travel Stops in Illinois have recently converted to solar, giving the Oklahoma-based retailer a total of eight locations that use solar power to fuel operations. The new solar-power stores are in Hamel, Kankakee and Knoxville.

Trillium, Love’s Houston-based provider of alternative fuel systems and renewable fuels, designed and constructed the solar-power systems, which are interconnected with each location. The systems will offset the electrical load consumed by the stores, and any excess power will be exported to each city’s power grid via a net metering program offered by the local electric utilities.

“Trillium is excited to continue working with Love’s in expanding its use of on-site, solar power generation,” said JP Fjeld-Hansen, vice president of Trillium. “Trillium is proud to produce green energy for these locations, as well as for the residents of Hamel, Kankakee and Knoxville.”

The first Love’s location to go solar was its Las Vegas travel stop in 2016, followed by Love’s Travel Stop in Santa Nella, Calif., in 2018.

Trillium’s alternative fuels offerings include compressed natural gas, hydrogen and electric vehicle charging infrastructure, as well as low carbon energy supply from renewable natural gas, solar installation and on-site electricity generation. Trillium, part of the Love’s Family of Companies, specializes in designing, building and operating these facilities and provides 24/7 maintenance services for various types of professional fleets. Combined, Love’s Travel Stops and Trillium own nearly 70 public-access CNG facilities.

Convenience retailers are increasingly embracing the potential of solar energy. As NACS Daily reported earlier this month, Tiger Fuel of Central Virginia recently acquired 40% of Altenergy Inc., the company that provided solar power to the company’s gourmet to-go convenience stores.

Earlier this year, NACS member Emirates National Oil Company (ENOC) unveiled its “Service Station of the Future,” a fully functioning station in Dubai that harnesses the power of renewable energy sources, including solar and wind. ENOC incorporated futuristic and energy-conserving elements in the station, which received the world's first LEED platinum certification, the highest rating a green building can receive.

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