Increasing energy efficiency reduces our costs and our Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHGs) which helps us to be a part of the effort to address climate change. In addition to Darden's direct impact, we know that the food and other products we source use energy and emit GHGs when they are produced and transported. We are working to better understand and measure these indirect impacts in our supply chain.
Darden's comprehensive energy efficiency efforts are integrated into our operations in a variety of ways, from how we design and build new restaurants; to how we manage our logistics and distribution system; to how we set thermostats and the type of appliances we use.
Since FY2008, we have reduced our per restaurant energy use by 7.84 percent moving us closer to our goal to reduce per restaurant energy use by 15 percent by 2015. We achieved consistent reductions in GHGs, from 608 Metric Tons (MT) Equivalent Carbon Dioxide (CO2e) per restaurant in FY2008 to 568 MT C02e in 2011. Darden scored 84 out of 100 in the 2011 Carbon Disclosure Project, earning us the highest disclosure rating within our sector. We also earned 49 out of 100 in the 2012 Climate Counts rating, up from 0 in 2008. We are operating of a 1.1 megawatt solar energy installation on the rooftop of our Restaurant Support Center which is expected to supply 18 percent of the center's annual energy needs. In 2012, we plan to expand the capacity of the installation to provide an additional 40,000 watts.
Over the last decade, Darden has used up-to-date Energy Management Systems (EMS) in our new buildings, making our restaurants "smarter" with automated lighting, heating and cooling. The goal is to ensure energy is always used as efficiently as possible, while maintaining the experience and environment our guests have come to expect. Beginning in FY2013, we will pilot updated EMS in approximately 10 older restaurants to determine the energy savings.
After undertaking an effort in FY2009 to replace the incandescent bulbs in our kitchen areas with more energy efficient compact florescent bulbs, we launched a major initiative in FY2011 to convert all of the "front of house" lighting in our restaurants to significantly more energy efficient LED bulbs by FY2014. With dozens of light fixtures in each of our 1,900 restaurants this is no small investment or task. For some of our older restaurants, the wiring is not compatible with LEDs, so making the change necessitates updating the electrical system. When completed, we estimate the change we will save approximately 40,000 KWh of energy per year.
Green Teams, which are groups of employees in each of our restaurants that implement programs to reduce waste, energy and water usage, also help identify new ways to improve sustainability performance.
Darden Direct is our best-in-class food distribution system that reduces energy use in our distribution system by more efficiently routing our trucks, increasing our use of rail shipments and dictating that the distribution centers we lease integrate a wide variety of energy efficiency features. When it is fully implemented at the end of FY2012, Darden Direct will save nearly 39 million miles of driving per year.