Launched by RMI earlier this year, the Portfolio RetroFit Challenge aims to demonstrate to building owners and operators that deep energy retrofits are both technically feasible and financially prudent, especially when applied at scale.
A global communications company, AT&T* connects millions of people each day. As demand for products and services increases, energy management becomes critical to the company’s success. Building energy use is particularly important because buildings are the largest contributor to energy use, energy cost, and carbon footprint in the company. The scope of AT&T’s real estate portfolio is extensive, with more than 65,000 facilities in more than 60 countries. AT&T has a strong energy program in place to manage this growth. The Portfolio RetroFit Challenge aims to build on AT&T’s current program to drive larger energy savings and enhance the company’s competitive advantage in an ever-growing energy intensive industry.
”Effective energy management is critical to the competitiveness of our business and the reliability of our service to customers,” said John Schinter, Executive Director of Energy at AT&T. “In 2011, we implemented more than 4,500 efficiency projects that totaled an annualized savings of $42 million, but by working with RMI, we’re looking to identify ways to expand our program even further.”
Beginning with a high-level, portfolio-wide analysis, the RMI and AT&T teams will determine how efficiency investments can make the greatest impact. The product of that analysis will be a long-term capital and construction schedule for deploying extensive retrofits and other bundles of efficiency measures across a portfolio at the right time, utilizing the right technologies, business processes and operational strategies.
“The impact of this project goes far beyond these buildings, as the Portfolio RetroFit Challenge will ultimately result in a shared framework for other building portfolio owners based on observations and lessons learned,” said Elaine Gallagher Adams, RMI senior buildings consultant. “The content for that framework will include insight from RMI and AT&T as well as the remaining Portfolio RetroFit Challenge partners. This is different from anything else happening in the realm of building portfolio energy strategy.”
The Portfolio RetroFit Challenge is intended to be a model for companies to select efficiency improvements that support important corporate real estate goals, such as improving space utilization or improving occupant satisfaction and demand. That’s important, because the country’s 120 million buildings consume 42 percent of our nation’s total energy and 72 percent of our electricity. The annual cost to fuel and power buildings is $400 billion—as much as we spent on Medicare in 2009—and much of this is wasted. RMI’s research for Reinventing Fire revealed that this could conservatively represent $1.4 trillion in savings over the next 40 years.
“While progress has been made on a building-by-building basis, what’s needed now is a way to scale,” said Coreina Chan, RMI buildings consultant. “By enabling large portfolio building owners to pursue upwards of 50 percent savings across multiple buildings through a deliberate and well-timed portfolio-wide strategy, we can demonstrate that building efficiency is a smart investment.”
About Rocky Mountain Institute
Rocky Mountain Institute is an independent, entrepreneurial, nonprofit think-and-do tank. RMI emphasizes integrative design, advanced technologies, and mindful markets in fulfilling its mission to drive the efficient and restorative use of resources. RMI’s strategic focus is to map and drive the U.S. transition from fossil fuels to efficiency and renewables by 2050. Visit http://www.rmi.org for more information.
AT&T Inc. is a premier communications holding company and one of the most honored companies in the world. Its subsidiaries and affiliates—AT&T operating companies—are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation’s largest 4G network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services. A leader in mobile Internet, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide of any U.S. carrier, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. It also offers advanced TV services under the AT&T U-verse® and AT&T | DIRECTV brands. The company’s suite of IP-based business communications services is one of the most advanced in the world.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.