Adam Ostaszewski, Diversey

The Opportunity

Adam Ostaszewski spent the summer of 2010 working as a Climate Corps fellow at Diversey, a global provider of commercial cleaning and sanitizing solutions, headquartered in Sturtevant, Wisconsin.

In 2008, Diversey made a firm commitment to reduce its total carbon emissions on an absolute basis by 25 percent by 2013. The firm has since invested in a portfolio of energy-saving projects that will ultimately achieve this goal while saving the company millions of dollars annually.

Different from most multi-national corporations, Diversey manages energy efficiency investments in much the same way one would manage a personal retirement plan.  Instead of evaluating each efficiency project solely as a discrete investment, Diversey views them as part of a long-term strategy that balances the length of the return on investment, the total of financial return and the cost of the carbon investment. Diversey utilizes this approach to reduce uncertainty and risk, diversifying its sustainability investments while ensuring a predictable and reliable rate of return.

The Solution

Adam, a MBA candidate at Babson College, was able to contribute his financial skills and background to improve various tracking processes Diversey already had in place.  Adam helped Diversey’s Environment, Safety and Health team translate the company’s working methodologies into a series of simplified tools to be used both internally and externally. These tools are enabling Diversey managers to make well-informed decisions about how to best direct the company’s future energy and sustainability investments across the global enterprise and ensuring that the expected savings from these projects are fully realized. These tools also enable managers to focus more time on the development of quality projects and less time on financial analysis.

The Results

Diversey now relies on the tools Adam helped develop in the following ways:

  1. Avoided Travel: Adam created a tool to track Diversey’s savings from avoided travel.  As the firm’s global travel is 10% of its carbon footprint, Diversey estimates $6 million in annual savings from avoided travel that it can invest in other energy projects.  The firm plans to begin using the tool by the end of 2011. It expects to see an increase in employee awareness about the benefits of reduced travel, which could deliver significant carbon and financial savings to the company. 
  2. Capital Expenditures: Adam added flexibility and additional functionality to Diversey’s capital expenditures tool, enabling it to provide relevant information on energy and carbon savings while integrating financial performance into the process.  Diversey uses this tool to regularly evaluate its whole portfolio approach to energy efficiency investments.
  3. Global Building Portfolio: Adam contributed to Diversey’s global tool, which looks across its building portfolio. It analyzes the costs and biggest opportunities to reduce energy in areas including propane, kerosene, fleet and global travel.