Sometimes it's all a matter of perspective: EDF Climate Corps fellow finds savings at CA Technologies

EDF Climate Corps fellow | February 21, 2012

By Shunsuke Numata, 2011 EDF Climate Corps fellow at CA Technologies, MBA Candidate at Case Western Reserve University's Weatherhead School of Management

As an EDF Climate Corps Fellow at CA Technologies, it became readily apparent the company had already implemented many textbook energy management and reduction initiatives (i.e. installation of metering systems and replacement of end-of-life devices with sustainable alternatives, etc.).Discovering this, I realized I should examine things from a different perspective and look for opportunities that have gone unnoticed or overlooked because they are entrenched in "business as usual." It is from this perspective that I found opportunities for as much as 500,000 KWH in energy reduction.

For example, when wandering the building at night, I noticed lights were on when no one was around, so the obvious question was: "Why?" Granted, there are some valid reasons for illuminating the building at night (for cleaning crews, etc.), but with that in mind, I was still able to find ways to change business as usual and reduce electricity usage.

By researching lighting schedules, I quickly realized adjustments could be made. To this end, I identified several projects and suggested that the company:

  1. Turn off the lighting at its Islandia facility an hour earlier – 10:30 PM instead of 11:30 PM
  2. Close the gym between the hours of 11 PM to 5 am when it was not being used.
  3. Create a "second shift" parking program to power-off lights in all but two lots.
  4. Reduce the intensity of interior lighting by de-lamping one of every three bulbs, and
  5. Eliminate decorative, non-essential lighting

After a fulfilling fellowship at CA Technologies, I'd have to say that my biggest take away was  the discovery that someone entering a situation with the proper training and  a fresh perspective can identify opportunities of low cost/no cost projects to reduce energy consumption that may have been overlooked. For the most part, work on the projects identified can be done internally and only requires changes to the LMS (lighting management system). Overall, my experience served its purpose, and EDF was a very useful resource for CA Technologies.  I was glad to be a part of it!