A strong climate deal makes dollars and sense for American business

VictoriaMills_287x377_1The chorus of business voices calling for climate action has grown steadily in size and strength in the months leading up to the Paris climate talks. Now that COP 21 is finally here, companies have pumped up the volume even more, with a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal and a wave of new commitments to the American Business Act on Climate Pledge.

Championing a Low-Carbon USA

In today’s Wall Street Journal, over a hundred U.S. companies placed a full-page advertisement calling for a shift to a low-carbon economy. The ad’s message is simple: failure to act on climate change puts America’s prosperity at risk, but the right action now will create jobs and boost competitiveness.

WSJ-ad

Click for full ad in PDF

Companies as diverse as Colgate-Palmolive, DuPont, eBay, General Mills, Ingersoll-Rand, Microsoft, Owens Corning and Pacific Gas & Electric signed on to the ad, which encourages the U.S. government to:

  1. Seek a strong and fair global climate deal in Paris that provides long-term direction and periodic strengthening to keep global temperature rise below 2°C
  2. Support action to reduce U.S. emissions that achieves or exceeds national commitments and increases ambition in the future
  3. Support investment in a low-carbon economy at home and abroad, giving industry clarity and boosting the confidence of investors

These companies recognize that their efforts alone can’t solve an issue like climate change. Businesses need governments around the world to act as well. By setting ambitious goals and providing regulatory certainty, governments can unleash the power of the marketplace to deliver the necessary reductions in emissions, while also boosting competitiveness and economic growth. Read more

That's a Wrap! EDF Climate Corps fellow finishes up at NewsCorp with big results

By Jay Stone, 2010 EDF Climate Corps Fellow at News Corporation – Dow Jones, MBA candidate at  Stern School of Business, New York University, Member of Net Impact

I looked straight ahead at the roughly 80” wide projected television screen in the News Corporation’s New York Polycom Telepresence Suite.  As News Corp’s Global Energy Initiative was traveling to Australia that week, I would be delivering my final presentation via video-conference in what must have been the most technologically advanced way possible.  With South Brunswick, NJ on the left and Sydney, Australia on the right, it was hard to believe I was in my last week as an EDF Climate Corps fellow.

What an amazing ten-week adventure it was! What seemed like a daunting amount of work in Week 1, turned out to be an enlightening, deep dive into the world of corporate energy strategy.   In the end, the projects I identified would serve to reduce the annual energy costs of News Corp’s printing plant in the Bronx, decrease the company’s carbon footprint and help underscore the company as a leader in its commitment to corporate sustainability.

Over the course of my fellowship, I worked with the lighting and HVAC foremen at the Dow Jones Printing Plant to gauge the building’s existing energy infrastructure:

  • I identified a $240,000 lighting retrofit that would pay itself back in 2.5 years and prevent approximately 620 metric tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere.
  • Through small tweaks to the plant’s thermostat HVAC systems, I identified methods that would result in over $30,000 in annual energy savings and require zero upfront capital investment. Read more

Thermostat Wars: Finding savings by adjusting the temperature

By Jonathan 'J.' Stone, 2010 EDF Climate Corps fellow at News Corporation – Dow Jones, MBA candidate at  Stern School of Business, New York University, Member of Net Impact

Last month, I embarked on a 10-week-long EDF Climate Corps fellowship at News Corp.- Dow Jones. I blogged about the spectacle of its printing facilities in the Bronx, printing millions of copies of the Wall Street Journal and New York Post daily.  At this point, I’ve officially passed the halfway mark of my fellowship and have taken the plunge into investigating energy efficiency opportunities and deleting costs for this massive company.

I recently ventured over to the Dow Jones headquarters in New Jersey for the public groundbreaking of their solar panel installation.  With the country’s attention focused on the BP oil disaster, there’s no better time to underscore the importance of alternative energy.  As two US senators spoke about the duality of economic and environmental benefits of such alternative energy projects, I could literally sense the boost in morale of the one thousand or so employees gathered on the lawn to witness their company receive praise for being a leader in the sustainable revolution.  Upon completion, the project will be the largest corporate single-site solar panel installation to date and will generate 4.1 megawatts of electricity.

This experience provided further affirmation of the myriad of benefits companies, employees, and, most importantly, the environment can generate by going green.  It’s no longer just the trendy thing to do, but it is becoming a social and financial responsibility. Hence, I returned to my office the next day thinking about ways that Dow Jones and News Corp. could further seize sustainable opportunities. Read more

Hot off the Press: EDF Climate Corps Fellow searches for energy savings at News Corp.

By Jay Stone, 2010 EDF Climate Corps Fellow at News Corporation – Dow Jones, MBA candidate at  Stern School of Business, New York University, Member of Net Impact

Behemoth printing presses scaling two whole floors tower above me in this multi-floor room. High-tech machines insert today’s advertisements in between completed newspapers. Massive paper-rolls arrive via train and are stacked five-high, each one of them weighing a ton. I can’t help but think, “I’m glad New York City does not lie on a fault line!”

And so went my first day as an EDF Climate Corps fellow at News Corp.’s Bronx printing facility where nearly 1 million copies of the Wall Street Journal and New York Post are printed daily. I’ll be spending ten weeks with News Corp and Dow Jones analyzing ways this 400,000-square-foot building can cut down its energy consumption.

I'll also spend a portion of my summer working with News Corp's Global Energy Initiative at News Corp Headquarters near Rockefeller Center. During this time, I'll be benchmarking other companies that are creating sustainable development funds as well as researching how to most effectively engage employees around the globe on sustainability initiatives.   Read more