Helping thousands of U.S. organizations monitor and improve energy efficiency, ENERGY STAR’s benchmarking tool Portfolio Manager has helped users achieve up to 30% in energy reductions.
To expand these savings and sustainable practices beyond energy, the EPA has added waste tracking functionality to Portfolio Manager, allowing FMs to more accurately benchmark water use and waste and creating a more comprehensive evaluative system.
“We’ve tracked our waste for several years using a series of spreadsheets, but it’s a cumbersome process,” says Sara Neff, Vice President of Sustainability at Kilroy Realty in Los Angeles. “This new waste-tracking feature will allow us to move our data into Portfolio Manager, where we’re already managing our energy and water usage, and will really help streamline our sustainability efforts.”
Energy has most frequently been the target of FMs looking to become more efficient and save money because of its relative ease to track. Waste, on the other hand, is not as frequently considered – partially because compiling data on it accurately is significantly more difficult. This is especially concerning as waste disposal rates continue to climb.
The EPA is trying to address this common oversight by addressing the benefits that come from benchmarking waste and taking waste management action. In addition to helping the environment, they suggest that the bottom line can be heavily impacted due to savings from reducing waste disposal.
General Motors, for example, generates $1 billion in revenue each year through recycling, and PepsiCo avoided $3 million in landfill costs in 2013. In addition to saving and even earning money through efficient waste management, it also affects an organization’s image, as 60% of consumers want to buy from environmentally responsible companies and 90% of organizations consider sustainability strategy important for attracting top talent.
In the past, those who benchmark have had to address the various facets of sustainable efficiency through different venues. Even Portfolio Manager only managed data from energy before its new upgrade. The tool now gives users the ability to take a bird’s eye view of their facilities’ environmental footprint to find areas where users can save.
Visit www.energystar.gov/benchmark for more information on Portfolio Manager.