Walmart - Wei Shao - 2014

Wei Shao | Babson College

  • Wei Shao
Facility Type: 
Industrial | Office Building

Walmart enlisted Wei Shao and Yinghuang Ji to unlock energy savings in its suppliers’ factories in China. 

They estimated that Walmart’s suppliers could save tens of millions of dollars through energy efficiency efforts, and identified concrete steps for them to begin to achieve these savings.

Shao and Ji started by visiting 11 factories in both the South and North of China. By talking to factory staff, they identified the most energy-intensive equipment, best practices in energy management, and the challenges related to implementing efficiency projects. They interviewed over 20 energy service companies and independent experts to learn about the latest technologies and opportunities for energy efficiency.

Taking into account the diversity of Walmart’s suppliers in China, Shao and Ji synthesized five major energy efficiency opportunities related to motors, heat exchange, HVAC, lighting and power systems. Next, they analyzed the potential cost savings from these opportunities.. If implemented across all Walmart’s factories in China, Shao and Ji’s recommendations could result in tens of millions of dollars in savings over the lifetime of the projects and reduce energy consumption by over half a billion kilowatt hours annually  – a GHG reduction that is equal to taking 72,500 cars off the road each year.

To facilitate implementation of these recommendations, Shao and Ji developed a rollout plan and created a list of energy service companies for Walmart’s suppliers.

Fellow Profile

The reason I applied for EDF Climate Corps:
I have always been interested in human impact on the environment and how energy can be used more efficiently. I would like to have a first-hand view on how EDF and large corporations could work together to prevent climate change. With EDF Climate Corps, I will be able to work with people who share the same passion and build my network in the cleantech and energy efficiency fields.

A recent professional or volunteer experience I've enjoyed:
Last March, I volunteered in Babson’s Coaching for Leadership and Teamwork Program (CLTP). This was my first experience in providing developmental feedback to undergraduate students at Babson. This program gave me an opportunity to develop coaching and feedback skills. Although I was the coach, I have to say, by observing the undergrads I learned a lot from them.

One skill I hope to make use of this summer:
I hope to make use of my ability to motivate people to work together and do their best to achieve meaningful goals.

My favorite class or activity in graduate school:
My favorite class at Babson is Entrepreneurship. The class has taught me about entrepreneurial thought and actions. The main takeaway for me has been to take action, test and then iterate.

My favorite outdoor place:
I will say Tibet. This is my dream place. I want to see the reflection of crystal clear sky and Tibetan mountains on the surface of water! The people there have the brightest smiles and kind eyes. Their strength and kindness is infectious and moving. It will make you reconsider the style in which you have lived your own life and bring you a new perspective.

One thing I hope to achieve:
I hope to bring entrepreneurial thought and action to China.