2010 Results for West/Southwest Companies

« Back to complete 2010 results

Autodesk

San Rafael, Calif.

Fellow: R.J. Crotser, Olin Business School, Washington University

Highlight: Helped implement C-FACT, a corporate greenhouse gas target-setting methodology

Details: R.J. Crotser, a second year MBA at Washington University in St. Louis, spent his summer as a Climate Corps Fellow at Autodesk, a world leader in 2D and 3D design, engineering, and entertainment software. Autodesk software tools help accelerate the design process, enabling users to innovative and find cost-effective solutions for a more sustainable world.

Crotser spent his summer using Autodesk tools to help Autodesk implement The Corporate Finance Approach to Climate-Stabilizing Targets (C-FACT). C-FACT is a novel corporate greenhouse gas (GHG) target-setting methodology developed by Autodesk that is business friendly, science driven, and transparent.

For the implementation of C-FACT, Crotser worked at the corporate headquarters evaluating energy efficient measures that can be taken to reduce KWh and GHGs.

Utilizing Autodesk® Revit® Architecture in conjunction with Autodesk® Green Building Studio® web-based service, he was able to simulate the effect of implementing different measures such as window film and a new BMS system, and determine the optimal mix of energy efficient measures that should be taken. The simulation identified the San Rafael location as an ideal candidate for a Solar PV System.

Ultimately, Crotser identified and started projects targeting a 20% offset of Autodesk's total energy consumption and equivalent GHG emissions. In addition, the simulation tools, combined with the energy efficient measures, augmented the solar financials in such a way that made the system a viable option.

Autodesk is now discussing plans to implement a solar system for their headquarters.

Cisco Systems

San Jose, Calif.

Fellow: Jeff Cheek, Melbourne Business School, University of Melbourne

Highlight: Standardized systems for proposing, tracking, and communicating energy efficiency projects

Details: Jeff Cheek spent his summer as a Climate Corps fellow at Cisco Systems' world headquarters. Cisco Systems, Inc. designs, manufactures, and sells Internet Protocol (IP)-based networking and other products to the communications and IT industry worldwide. Cheek is currently pursuing his MBA at Melbourne Business School in Melbourne, Australia.

Cisco employs almost 70,000 people in offices spread all around the globe, thus changes that can be made on a company-wide scale can have a far larger impact than just one project at one facility. With this in mind, Cheek's major work focused on improved standardization of the systems for proposing, tracking, and communicating energy efficiency projects across the company's portfolio of buildings.

Cheek built a financial model designed to standardize financial analysis and project selection metrics, as well as provide a single location for project data to be stored, tracked, and compared.

In addition, Cheek prepared case studies to be distributed internationally to gauge best practice implementation rates, and designed a strategy for all tools to be merged onto the network. These tools are hoped to drive more widespread implementation of energy efficiency, spark collaboration among facilities, and decrease the effort required to communicate the message to Cisco's global workforce.

Compass Group

Palo Alto, Calif.

Fellow: Chris Gassman, Tepper School of Business, Carnegie Mellon University and School of Law, University of Pittsburgh

Highlight: Developed "Three Tiered Strategy for Operational Excellence," an energy efficiency playbook to guide frontline managers

Details: Chris Gassman spent his summer on a culinary adventure like no other: digging into how much carbon gets baked into food on its way to your plate, as well as after you finish with your plate.

As the leading food service company in the U.S. market, Compass Group touches over 8,000 commercial kitchens across the country, which means a diverse array of clients. These clients increasingly ask for food service solutions that help them tackle their own carbon footprint (being associated with a client's facility the kitchens count towards the client's footprint, and commercial kitchens are often five times as energy intense as average office space per square foot).

In response, Compass Group took its collaboration with Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to a new level by bringing onboard Gassman as Compass Group North America (CGNA) Climate Corps fellow for summer 2010. Gassman, a MBA/JD student at Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business & University of Pittsburgh School of Law, worked with CGNA's Business Excellence Team to research and combine Group and industry best practices in Menuing, Kitchen Services, Site Equipment, Facilities, and Transparency.

The result was a "Three Tiered Strategy for Operational Excellence," a playbook to guide frontline managers in a systems approach to the lowest hanging fruit and build traction from there to the largest hanging fruit.

Gassman's final report indicated that while there is a lot more work to be done in coming up with reliable metrics/repeatable measuring practices (a challenge consistently conveyed by employees and industry experts), there are ways to close this gap and incredible efficiency opportunities here for most commercial food service units. Initial estimates illustrate hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of dollars in annual expenses that could easily be saved with little upfront effort or cost.

Read Gassman's blog post about his experience at Compass Group.

eBay

San Jose, Calif.

Fellow: Megan Rast, Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley

Highlight: Identified savings of 4,857 metric tons of CO2 emissions per year

Details: As an EDF Climate Corps fellow interning at eBay Inc., Megan Rast took the challenge to make the business case for energy efficiency and carbon reduction initiatives this summer before returning for her second year at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business.

While at eBay's San Jose headquarters this summer, Megan provided valuable expertise as a sustainability expert, calculated the energy and cost savings of seven energy efficiency projects for computer power management and lighting, as well as engaged external and internal stakeholders on renewable energy opportunities.

Of the 7 energy efficiency projects calculated, Megan recommended deployment of the 4 energy efficiency projects with a positive NPV and a payback period less than 2 years. These include purchase of computer power management software for all units, immediately replacing all computers deployed for over 3 years, increasing ongoing upgrades to Windows 7, and upgrading the lighting to the latest T-8s.

The recommended energy efficiency projects when fully implemented, could result in 6,996,549 kWh of annual electricity savings, more than $1.5 million NPV of cost savings, and 4,857 metric tons of CO2 emissions reductions, and have an average simple payback period of 1.16 years.

Read Rast's blog post about her experience at eBay.

Franklin Templeton Investments

San Mateo, Calif.

Fellow: Daniel Cantor, Erb Institute, University of Michigan

Highlight: Identified savings of more than 6,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions

Details: Dan Cantor spent his summer at Franklin Templeton Investments, a global investment manager with over $602 billion in assets under management, as of 7/31/2010.

Cantor is working toward an MBA/MS at the University of Michigan's Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise. His fellowship included working with the employee green team to launch an internal campaign encouraging all employees to become more energy efficient in their daily actions, analyzing efficiency opportunities in office buildings at Franklin's corporate headquarters, and quantifying the efficiency gains of two new state of the art data centers.

The behavior change campaign is titled "My Eco Pledge" and educated employees on how much energy they could save individually and collectively by taking a variety of actions. There are random prize drawings for individual rewards, and group prizes for the floors that save the most help foster friendly competition.

Opportunities for efficiency gains in the office buildings included a lighting retrofit for the parking garages, installing motion sensors in bathrooms, and the use of more aggressive computer and monitor power management.

In total, Dan identified investments in efficiency projects that could save over $320,000 in annual electricity costs and avoid over 6,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalent over the lifetime of the projects.

Read Cantor's blog post about his experience at Franklin Templeton.

PSC Environmental Services, LLC

Kent, Wash.

Fellow: Arindam Jha, Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University

Highlight: Identified savings of approximately 1.9 million kWh of electricity consumption per year

Details: Arindam Jha spent his summer as a Climate Corp fellow with PSC Environmental Services - an environmental service company with nation-wide presence. Jha, an MBA candidate at Weatherhead school of Management, Case Western Reserve University helped PSC to make significant progress in its sustainability goals.

The focus areas of his projects were energy audits at PSC plants, lighting upgrades, PC power management and other office equipment. According to Jha, he found most of the saving opportunities in the processing plants of PSC. The project he identified could save about $2.6 million over the lifetime of the projects and cut approximately 1.9 million kWh of electricity consumption per year.

Another important fact of these projects was that the implementation cost for all the projects combined was comparatively low and estimated at $200,000 (without considering any rebate from utility companies).

His analysis of PSC electricity consumption further revealed that PSC could easily save about $350,000 each year or 10% of its annual electricity cost by implementing low cost lighting upgrades.

PSC plans to implement many of the proposed projects as part of its overall sustainability program and as a Climate Leaders partner, PSC will be focusing on reducing the organization's greenhouse gas emissions.

REI

Kent, Wash.

Fellow: Sarah Will, Bainbridge Graduate Institute

Highlight: Identified savings of more than 2,700 metric tons of CO2 emissions per year

Details: After graduating from Bainbridge Graduate Institute with an MBA in Sustainable Business, Sarah Will spent her summer at REI, a national outdoor retail co-op dedicated to inspiring, educating and outfitting its members and the community for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship. REI runs 112 retail locations across the country, two distribution centers, a fixture shop, and a headquarters campus in Kent.

Will's assignment for the summer was to identify as many energy efficiency projects as possible for the company. Identifying and navigating the barriers to energy efficiency at REI was the biggest and most rewarding challenge during her fellowship. Will found that the greatest opportunities for energy efficiency include lighting sensors and bulb replacements, retrocommissioning, cool roofs at retail buildings in warm climates, and computer, kiosk, and point of sale power management at retail locations.

If REI were to invest in all identified projects, the company could save over 6.5 million kWh, 2,700 metric tons of CO2, and almost $900,000 annually.

Read Will's blog post about her experience at REI.

SAP

Palo Alto, Calif.

Fellow: Emily Martin, Kenan-Flagler Business School, University of North Carolina and Nicholas School for the Environment, Duke University

Highlight: Created database of energy efficiency projects with financial/environmental returns; improved functionality of SAP's Carbon Impact software

Details: Emily Martin, an MBA student at the University of North Carolina and a graduate student at Duke University's Nicholas School for the Environment, worked as a Climate Corps fellow at SAP, the world's leading provider of business software solutions.

Martin worked with SAP's Sustainability Team to create a database of energy efficiency projects and their typical financial and environmental returns. She identified trends in corporate energy efficiency investment and areas where SAP could leverage its position in the IT space to help companies manage their energy efficiency investments.

Martin also worked to build improved functionality into SAP's Carbon Impact software solution and created a work plan for future functionality improvements. Carbon Impact allows companies to create a proactive strategy for enterprise carbon management and sustainability - including product development, logistics, employee activities, and the entire supply chain.

Read Martin's blog post about her work at SAP.

Savvis

Seattle, Wash.

Fellow: Thomas Potier

Highlight: Potier recommended data center air flow management projects that could save Savvis about 80 GWh or $6 million per year.

Details: Thomas Potier worked at a datacenter operated by Savvis in Seattle. Savvis, headquartered in St. Louis, Mo., is among the leaders of the data center industry with 20 facilities in the U.S. and 31 locations worldwide. Potier, MBA student at the University of Washington, worked with the Central Engineering Team at Savvis to identify energy savings across their facilities.

Sorting through the projects with the biggest impact, Potier determined that two sets of projects would provide large savings. The first group encompassed the HVAC system efficiencies. The second set, focused on air flow management, proposed solutions to improve use of the cold air flow such as hot-cold aisles enclosing, sealing leaks and enabling variable airflow.

Potier estimated that if Savvis were to implement the airflow management projects it would save around 80 GWh or 6 million dollars per year. Adding the HVAC efficiency improvement projects would increase the yearly energy savings by around 3 GWh or 200 thousand dollars. These projects could reduce CO2 emissions by 37500 metric tons.

Shorenstein

San Francisco, Calif.

Fellow: Joey Barr, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley

Highlight: Identified savings of 5,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions

Details: Joey Barr spent his summer internship working at the corporate headquarters of Shorenstein Realty Services, one of the country's oldest and most respected real estate organizations, which is active nationally in the ownership and operation of high-quality office properties.

As an industry leader, Shorenstein is actively involved in energy management across it’s portfolio and is continually seeking more opportunities to add energy efficiency projects within its buildings. In fact, most of Shorenstein’s buildings are already Energy Star certified and have an average score higher than 80.

Barr, an MBA candidate at Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, was brought in as a Climate Corps intern to help Shorenstein identify ways to engage its tenants in energy efficiency projects. As such, Barr worked with Shorenstein’s G.R.E.E.N. Committee to create a business case for various energy efficient projects as well as a comprehensive report outlining a number of energy management strategies from the both the company’s and the tenants’ perspectives.

The recommendations ranged from lighting reductions to office equipment power management strategies to green cleaning. In total, Barr identified opportunities across Shorenstein's portfolio that have the potential to reduce annual electricity consumption by more than 10 million kWh’s, leading to a decrease in costs of more than $1 million annually, and an avoidance of more than 5,000 tons of carbon emissions.

Sunrise Preschools

Phoenix, Ariz.

Fellow: Jessica Berger, Jones Graduate School of Business, Rice University

Highlight: Identified savings of up to 865,293 kWh of electricity consumption per year

Details: Jessica Berger spent her summer as a Climate Corps fellow at Borg Holdings, Inc., the parent company of two chains of child care centers: Sunrise Preschools and Tots Unlimited.

An MBA Candidate at Jones Graduate School of Business, Rice University, she evaluated energy efficiency opportunities such as lighting retrofits, internet thermostats and PC power management across the company's 27 sites.

Based on her bottom-up estimates that lighting was accounting for 40% of electricity usage, Jessica decided to investigate lighting further. She found that through retrofitting the fluorescent lamps in the sites, the number of lamps and ballasts could be reduced by half and the total input wattage of fixtures cut by 45%.

In total, Jessica identified opportunities that could save Sunrise Preschools up to $1.14 million over the life of the projects. In addition the opportunities could save up to 865,293 kWh of electricity annually.

Read Berger's blog post about her experience at Sunrise Preschools.

Wells Fargo

San Francisco, Calif.

Fellow: Shinu Thomas, Thunderbird School of Global Management

Highlight: Identified savings of 17,145 metric tons of CO2 emissions

Details: Shinu Thomas, an MBA candidate at Thunderbird School of Global Management, spent her summer at Wells Fargo, a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company. There, she supported the company's greenhouse gas emissions task force.

Wells Fargo's more than 10,000 locations collectively represented a vast opportunity for energy efficiency and related cost savings. Thomas was challenged with measuring the potential financial, energy and greenhouse gas savings from more efficient use of non-essential office equipment - everything from coffee makers to vending machines.

Working closely with the Environmental Affairs department and multiple internal stakeholders, Thomas developed multiple tools to help the company measure and forecast its kilowatt hour and dollar savings as well as related reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. This helped with internal tracking as well as reporting initiatives.

In addition, a marketing campaign was subsequently developed leveraging the highly successful Wells Fargo Green Teams to encourage behavioral change throughout the company.

Overall, Thomas identified over $2.8 million in potential savings and 17,145 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

Yahoo!

Sunnyvale, Calif.

Fellow: Jim Wilson, Fuqua School of Business, Duke University

Highlight: Identified savings of 17,145 metric tons of CO2 emissions

Details: Jim Wilson spent his summer at Yahoo! Inc., one of the most visited Internet destinations and a world-class online media company.

An MBA student at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, Wilson's main project work involved evaluating the current power consumption metrics of Yahoo's domestic and international data centers, both for determining the company's current carbon footprint as well as scouting prospective future sites.

Such a job required:

1) Researching countries where Yahoo could possibly build data centers that use renewable energy, and considering both the pros and cons of each option, including cost of electricity, incentive programs and tax implications

2) Evaluating the expected Power Usage Efficiency of a data center in each location, which can often bring unexpected results

3) Assessing all of the factors that Yahoo must consider (and balance) when building a data center – not just energy efficiency, but also data transfer speed, bandwidth, and physical server capacity.

Wilson also worked on a project studying the Japanese Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) air conditioning model, investigating whether certain components at Yahoo’s Sunnyvale, Calif., headquarters could be retro-fitted with this technology.

Since these systems are designed to be installed using tiny piping that requires little additional drilling, Wilson’s plan could reduce HVAC Load in Yahoo's Headquarters by 10% – which could cut Yahoo’s electric bills by almost $400,000.

Read Wilson's blog post about his experience at Yahoo.

« Back to complete 2010 results