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Case Study

Solar installation greens corporate image and finances

Solar installation greens corporate image and finances

BNY Mellon

Context

BNY Mellon has a long commitment to green behaviour, to the extent of establishing a dedicated Corporate Sustainability Officer to assure environmentally friendly practices. Since 1993, Jones Lang LaSalle has provided a full range of real estate services to the bank including integrated facility management, project management, tenant representation, lease administration and strategic consulting. Through this close ongoing relationship the firm was aware of BNY Mellon’s goal to reduce carbon emissions, and explored opportunities for obtaining clean energy from sources such as solar power and wind.

Services provided
Working with the National Grid, one of the world’s largest investor-owned utility companies, Jones Lang LaSalle’s facility management team proposed a 76 kilowatt photovoltaic system capable of an annual output of over 100,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) for a 385,000 s.f. office complex in Everett, Massachusetts. The “grid-tie” system is an ideal combination of function—running in tandem with the building’s actual power consumption at any given time—and simplicity from a design that does not require batteries. As a pilot program to help relieve peak demand for electricity, Jones Lang LaSalle was able to identify generous rebates and tax incentives that covered over three-fourths of the project’s $900,000 cost.

Outcomes
Since BNY Mellon wanted to underline its commitment to sustainability, the property management team identified and implemented a unique superstructure tower mechanism that raised the profile of the 5,762 s.f. array of rooftop solar panels for greater public visibility. Almost three years after initial exploration of green energy options, the system was commissioned on Earth Day, April 22, 2009. Extensive media coverage included a Boston television station that dubbed it “the most visible solar array in Massachusetts. ”After twelve months of operation, the system has performed even better than anticipated. It provided 107,000 kWh—about 3 percent of the Everett facility’s power requirements—with solar energy. Yearly output should continue at this level, which means a direct reduction of 50 tons of carbon dioxide and 425 pounds of sulfur dioxide emissions each year. The “green” also extends to savings: the system saved $17,000 in energy expenses during its first year. With the installation of this photovoltaic system and other recent sustainable projects the Everett facility is expecting reduced utility costs by over 20 percent annually, Mellon leaders are so pleased with the combination of sustainable savings and positive exposure that they are considering similar photovoltaic installations at other business sites.

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