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Expert Columns

Sourcing Renewables  -  March 8, 2021 - By Catherine Paquette, Cisco

EnergyOps: Reducing Cisco’s energy use and greenhouse gas emissions

Within Cisco’s direct operations, the main source of emissions is the energy required to operate labs and data centers. Catherine Paquette of Cisco explains in this column how the unique approach of the company's Global Energy Management and Sustainability (GEMS) team has driven progress toward achieving their Scope 1 and 2 GHG reduction goals.

Distributed Energy Resources  -  March 3, 2021 - By NRG Energy, Inc.

Choice and Flexibility: DER Survey Insights, Part 2

As the modern grid evolves away from large central generation towards smaller on-site electricity production, the new electric paradigm has spurred the growth of an incredible array of on-site distributed energy resources. In Part 2 of this series from NRG Energy based on results of the 2020 State of Distributed Energy Resources study conducted by Smart Energy Decisions, NRG looks at which technologies are gaining ground and five steps to consider when evaluating the selection of DERs that are right for you.

GHG Emissions  -  February 26, 2021 - By Stacie Haas, Fifth Third Bank

How a Focus on ESG Led to a Bank’s Carbon Neutrality Achievement

Public companies have a responsibility to deliver long-term sustainable value, but the definition of that value has evolved beyond a return on investments for institutional and individual investors. In this column, Stacie Haas explains how Fifth Third Bank became the first regional commercial bank to achieve carbon neutrality, an achievement that wouldn’t have been possible without a strategic focus on ESG.

Distributed Energy Resources  -  February 24, 2021 - By NRG Energy, Inc.

Energy Cost & Control: DER Survey Insights, Part 1

As the U.S. energy landscape continues to undergo a transformational shift, how and where power is generated has emerged as a key driver in the transition. In Part 1 of this series from NRG based on results of the 2020 State of Distributed Energy Resources study conducted by Smart Energy Decisions, NRG looks at drivers and challengers among organizations who are currently deploying or considering the deployment of DERs - as well as ways to overcome those challenges.

February 19, 2021 - By John Failla

Five years of Smart Energy Decisions

Inspired by a desire to help accelerate the energy transition and the principles espoused by Jigar Shah in his book, "Creating Climate Wealth," five years ago today on Friday, February 19, 2016, we published the first issue of our newsletter with this welcome message: “Each issue of our weekly newsletter, created exclusively for Fortune 1000 commercial and industrial energy executives just like you, will feature news, expert columns, and research. Here's to your success!" 

February 19, 2021 - By John Moore, NRDC

The Texas Energy Catastrophe and Clean Energy

A historic freeze plunged every county in Texas into a winter weather advisory and caused the state’s electricity system to fail, with 4 million customers facing outages, many that lasted hours and hours. For some naysayers, the failure of the grid operator in Texas to prepare for severe weather is yet another chance to try and blame clean wind and solar energy, the very technologies we need to address climate change. However, says John Moore of NRDC in this column, that dog won't hunt.

February 15, 2021 - By John Schoettler, Amazon

The next chapter for HQ2: sustainable buildings surrounded by nature

Amazon has unveiled a proposed design for the second phase of its Arlington, Virginia headquarters. In this column, John Schoettler, Vice President of Amazon's Global Real Estate and Facilities team, offers highlights of the plan, which blends architectural and ecological elements for the new PenPlace to meet LEED Platinum certification, run all-electric central heating and cooling systems on 100% renewable energy, and align with Amazon's Climate Pledge to be net-zero carbon by 2040 and advance Arlington and Amazon’s shared commitment to be leaders in the fight against climate change.

February 8, 2021 - By Better Buildings, U.S. Department of Energy

LBA Realty: Climate Risk Assessment Report and Resiliency Plan

LBA Realty (LBA, a full-service real estate investment and management company with a diverse portfolio of industrial and office properties in major markets throughout the United States, needed to implement an actionable climate risk assessment process to address concerns at a property-specific level. This column from Better Buildings shows how a new process was created to identify, validate, and mitigate confirmed climate risk factors during the acquisition process.

GHG Emissions  -  February 3, 2021 - By Larissa Koehler, EDF

In 2021 we must set more ambitious targets for zero-emission trucks and buses

Despite the historic difficulty of 2020, there were some climate and air quality bright spots. For example, the march toward zero-emission trucks and busses is on. In this column, Larissa Koehler of EDF explains why we should increase our ambition in 2021.

January 29, 2021 - By Chris Hensley, Encycle

Commercial HVAC practices: Adaptability is key during a continually changing business landscape

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many U.S. businesses operating from commercial buildings experienced either a shutdown or a substantial reduction in facility usage in 2021. This column from Chris Hensley at Encycle explores energy usage and control decisions companies are making as they recalibrate their buildings' HVAC operational requirements.
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