Children's Defense Fund

At a Glance



Project Types

Commercial Energy Efficiency, Clean and Renewable Energy, Sustainability and Energy Management Strategy




Washington, DC


Eric Plunkett recommended energy saving project ideas for both the Children’s Defense Fund office in Washington DC, and the Hayley Farm in Tennessee.


At Children’s Defense Fund, Eric Plunkett got the conversation started on energy efficiency and identified the lowest-hanging fruit, while also beginning to figure out what larger projects might be viable within the company.


At the CDF 48,800 sq. ft. office in Washington, D.C., where Plunkett was located, he recommended lighting and occupancy sensor upgrades—particularly in the stairwells, offices and open floor space—retro-commissioning of the HVAC system, HVAC system setting adjustments, IT power management settings, purchasing electricity from a third-party provider and purchasing VendingMiser® and SnackMiser™ technologies.

Plunkett also had a chance to visit Haley Farm, the 157-acre, 11-building campus in Clinton, Tennessee. It consists of a chapel, a library, office space, a lodge and several cabins. Together, these buildings occupy 26,700 sq. ft. He recommended lighting upgrades (CFL and T8 fluorescent), a Level I energy audit, the replacement of old refrigerators and showerheads and the creation of “shut down” procedures for buildings when they are not in use.

For both properties, he began to explore the feasibility of solar photovoltaic installations.

Plunkett’s final recommendations to CDF’s leadership team focused on organizational changes that would introduce energy efficiency as a valued resource for all levels of the organization, as well as for specific positions in HR, facilities management, IT and finance. Plunkett also identified a number of behavioral changes that would reduce energy waste due to a lack of awareness.

Potential Impact

Excluding the recommendations that are difficult to quantify, specific projects Plunkett recommended could reduce energy costs by 23 percent in the D.C. office and three percent at Haley Farm.

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