Darden Restaurants

At a Glance


Food Services

Project Types

Commercial Energy Efficiency, Clean and Renewable Energy




Orlando, FL


Felipe Mai helped Darden Restaurants meet their 2015 goal of a 15% reduction in energy usage by focusing on solar water heaters and energy management systems.


Felipe Mai worked with the sustainability and the business analytics departments, identifying strategies to further reduce energy across Darden Restaurants’ 2,100 locations. In 2009, Darden Restaurants announced a commitment to reduce average energy usage per restaurant 15% by 2015. As of 2012, it had reduced energy usage by 12%. To reach its goal, Darden wanted to understand what technologies and initiatives could best reduce the company’s energy use over the next two years.


Mai identified two pilot initiatives with the most potential – Energy Management Systems and Solar Water Heaters.

Potential Impact

These projects, when fully implemented, could result in approximately 128 million kilowatt hours of annual energy savings and $20 million potential savings over the project lifetime. Along with the recommendations, Mai’s findings will help the sustainability department plan Darden’s future energy efficiency goals.  

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