Peter Petropoulos spent his summer immersed in the LEED rating system as a Climate Corps fellow at PepsiCo in its 'business information solutions' headquarters in Plano, Texas. Petropoulos, an MBA student at The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, performed a gap analysis between the facility and LEED certification. Energy intensity, measured by the buildings Energy Star rating, was a critical hurdle to overcome during the analysis. This hurdle represented opportunity for PepsiCo to invest in energy efficiency and get a return on its LEED investment.
After speaking with experts in HVAC, Petropoulos found the building was designed to house a call center that would operate around the clock. As PepsiCo does not use it for this purpose, Petropoulos found energy savings in a new operating sequence for the buildings various systems that could be implemented with little cost.
This and other projects identified could result in a total reduction in annual energy consumption by approximately 1.9 million kWh, reduce operating costs by $195,000, and avoid 1,200 metric tons of CO2 emissions. These investments have a net present value of $1.2 million of their respective lifetimes.
During the ten-week period, Petropoulos also managed to uncover gaps and opportunities and chart a roadmap for the rest of the LEED rating system. This expansive system includes water use efficiencies, landfill waste diversion, air quality improvement, and a range of other critical areas of facility management.