One year after opening its first green roof, atop the Morgan mail processing facility, in midtown Manhattan, which was projected to save the facility $30,000 in annual energy costs, the project, together with other energy-saving measures, has reduced energy costs by more than $1 million.
The green roof covers 109,000 square feet, or nearly 2.5 acres. During construction, approximately 90 percent of the original roof was recycled and reused on the new roof. Click here for a time-lapse video during construction of the green roof.
The green roof is also on track to help the Morgan facility reduce polluted storm water runoff 75 percent in summer and 40 percent in winter. The facility also plans to monitor additional building performance measures including water quality, bio-diversity and urban heat island effect.
Tom Samra, vice president, Facilities, for USPS, attributes the accelerated rate of savings to a 40 percent per month reduction in energy use and an average decrease in energy expenses of 15 percent since the green roof’s opening.
The Morgan facility also replaced 1600 windows, and implemented other energy-saving measures. It is pursuing the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and High Performance and Sustainable Building (HPSB) certifications.
Current LEED-certified postal facilities include post offices in Denver, Colo., and Southampton, N.Y., and mail processing centers in Greenville, S.C., and Troy, Mich.
The USPS also has several energy-saving projects underway across other postal facilities. In January, the Postal Service announced it was investing close to $29 million to improve energy efficiency at its facilities on the East Coast, and in May, the agency signed a $28.7 million contract to install energy-management systems in up to 2,250 post offices.
In 2009, the Postal Service implemented its Enterprise Energy Management System (EEMS), which allows the agency to monitor, manage and measure facility energy data and performance. EEMS has helped validate the Postal Service’s decrease in energy use by 10.8 trillion British thermal units (Btus) since 2005, and avoid more than $400 million in energy costs since 2007.
In 2009 alone, the Postal Service’s energy efficiency efforts saved $3 million and nearly 100 million kilowatts of electricity.