“We’re not leading with a ‘we have a carbon goal’, we’re not leading with a ‘we have a green goal’, we are leading with a ‘we have a money goal’ – not measured based on sacrifice and principles, but it is based upon achieving good results for intelligent investment.”
I looked through a few of the recommended links and saw a company that caught my eye in the Rocky Mountain Institute Link. RMI’s “Reinventing Fire” program “offers actionable solutions for four energy-intensive sectors of the economy: transportation, buildings, industry and electricity. They choose champions in each category for various reasons. Malkin Holdings, owner of the Empire State Building won the category for buildings.
On a slow night this summer I decided to stroll down to the Empire State Building because I had never been there before. I was most interested in getting to the top so that I could soak up the views from 1250 feet above New York City. Unfortunately, a couple thousand other people had the same idea as me at the same time. Although the wait took about an hour, the line wrapped through several different floors of like a museum. Early exhibits explained some of the history behind the building, but the majority of them explained the recent green renovations to the 80-year-old building. The statistics they showed were very impressive, particularly because it had never really crossed my mind that a standing building could have such an impact on the environment and have the ability to improve by so much.
The “green renovation” cost around $100 million. RMI was one of several consultants who worked to analyze the overhaul.. Improvements to the building over the past few years include:
- Total overhaul to the HVAC system (Heating, Ventalation and Air Conditioning)
- Energy efficient windows
- Electronic readouts to make users aweare of their personal energy consumption
- Maximized “daylighting”
- Tenant demand ventaliation control
- Occupant sensor Controls
The overhaul decreases the building’s energy consumption by around 38%, saving around $4.4 million per year. A video on RMI’s site explains how the motivation was more investment based than solely the societal good of “going green”. “We’re not leading with a ‘we have a carbon goal’, we’re not leading with a ‘we have a green goal’, we are leading with a ‘we have a money goal’ – not measured based on sacrifice and principles, but it is based upon achieving good results for intelligent investment.”
These comments raise an interesting question – Is green as appealing when the motive is financial reward and not “societal good”?