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Corporate Execs Assume Energy is Part of Sustainability Agendas

Linda Hardesty

RMI Energy ManageCoreNet Global and Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) published their “Next Generation Energy Management: A Roadmap to the Next Level of Performance Phase One Report,” which finds that most companies have begun implementing some level of energy management.

Over two-thirds of corporations now have a sustainability agenda and staff as well as energy management plans, and nearly half have dedicated energy managers, a position that was only just emerging in 2007, according to the report.

An overarching theme of the change in drivers since 2007 is that energy and sustainability have become significantly more integrated, measured and public. Most senior corporate executives think that environmental, social, and governance issues include energy management, rather than isolating energy in its own silo.

Energy cost savings continues to rank as a primary driver of corporate sustainability overall and the most important driver for sustainable real estate. Between 2009 and 2012, over 90 percent of corporate leaders continued to cite energy cost savings as important for corporate sustainability, and over 40 percent cite it as the most important driver.

The report notes that companies that use a lot of natural gas are, under many contract terms applied to buildings use, subject to its fluctuating price including a sharp rise from its unbelievably low price in early 2012. Reducing exposure to natural gas price variation through alternative heating approaches like heat pumps, efficiency, biofuels, or even solar hot water and other approaches makes sense despite the generally low prices currently available.



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