The 10 companies all signed on to an expansion of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s Carbon Challenge, being launched though PlaNYC, the city’s sustainability program. The other seven corporate signatories are American International Group, BlackRock, Bloomberg LP, Credit Suisse, Google, JetBlue Airways and PVH. The companies join 17 universities with more than 35 campuses that accepted the Carbon Challenge when it began in 2007, and the 11 largest hospital organizations that joined in 2009.
Bloomberg LP, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase – the largest participant based on its New York City footprint – have committed to reducing emissions by up to 40 percent from their New York City offices in 10 years.
Deutsche Bank says over the past few years it has completed approximately 80 distinct projects in New York City that reduced its electricity use by 18.3 million kWh per year, a reduction of around a quarter. The company recently installed 682 solar panels on the roof of its New York City offices, which will decrease carbon emissions by 100 metric tons per year, the bank says. In 2009, the company placed a 250 kWh solar array on the roof of its Piscataway, NJ, office.
The five other companies have committed to a 30 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from their New York City-based offices.
Of the participating universities in the Carbon Challenge, four have already met their goals, as well as one hospital. Barnard College, The Fashion Institute of Technology, New York University, Rockefeller University and New York Hospital Queens have reduced their emissions by an average of 33.3 percent and cut energy consumption by 22 percent. In the last year alone, these institutions reduced their emissions by 86,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide and saved $19 million in lower energy costs, the mayor’s office says.
The Fashion Institute of Technology was the first university to reach the Carbon Challenge goal and is continuing to build on that initiative with the installation of its second green roof. NYU met its 30 percent greenhouse gas reduction goal in 2011 – six years before the 2017 commitment date – accomplished through its co-generation plant, energy efficiency projects and campus-wide engagement campaigns. It is now targeting a 50 percent greenhouse gas reduction goal by 2016.