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Sustainable Development Update
August 3, 2017

Sustainable Development Focus

As renewable energy gains traction, seeing a bright future for on-site energy storage

Urban Land - Jul 31 Commercial property owners are rethinking their skepticism toward energy storage systems, with battery prices dropping and third parties offering new financing models. “Everybody is recognizing that it is a necessary component of the overall [sustainability] picture,” says Sara Neff, the senior vice president of sustainability at Kilroy Realty Corporation, the California-based real estate company. The first quarter of 2017 was “the biggest quarter in history for the U.S. energy storage market,” according to a tracking report from the Energy Storage Association. Led by large-scale utility installations, primarily in California, the megawatt hours of storage deployments doubled in 2016, compared with the previous year, according to the association’s data. Several different trends are converging to make battery storage more attractive. Battery pack costs have dropped from about $1,000 per kilowatt-hour in 2010 to $230 per kilowatt-hour in 2016, according to a report released in June by McKinsey & Co. At the same time, energy rates continue to soar, and many states—including California, New York, Massachusetts, and Hawaii—are turning to incentives to help push companies to find ways to manage their consumption.


Smart technology is coming to a city near you

Bisnow - Jul 26 Within the next 20 years, major U.S. cities will use technology to track traffic congestion, monitor air quality, expand broadband access, and provide more convenient parking options. Cities are working with private companies and other organizations to deploy technology to become more competitive in the global economy. These initiatives are improving the quality of life for residents through better transportation, green initiatives, and digital infrastructure. San Jose, New York, and Dallas are among the large cities to deploy technology infrastructure in their cities, but they are not alone in their efforts.

Houston data center city's first to achieve coveted green certification

Proud Green Building - Jul 27 The Houston Skybox One Data Center has been awarded LEED gold certification by the U.S. Green Building Council. The 96,129-square-foot purpose-built facility is the only data center in Houston and one of a handful in Texas to receive the prestigious designation, officials said. Highlights of the building’s green features include: multiple solar arrays supplying power to the facility, electricity options available to clients that provide 100 percent renewable energy, and three times the rainwater detention required by code.

JPMorgan Chase to source 100% renewable energy by 2020, develop PV portfolio

PV-Tech - Jul 31 JPMorgan Chase plans to source renewable energy for 100 percent of its global energy needs by 2020. In a corresponding move, JPMorgan Chase also plans to facilitate $200 billion in clean financing through 2025 — the largest commitment by a global financial institution, it claims. As part of the company’s new renewable-energy initiative, JPMorgan Chase will install a large on-site solar portfolio, including PV institutions for up to 1,400 bank-owned retail and 40 commercial buildings globally. JPMorgan Chase plans to develop a PV institution at its Polaris Corporate Center in Columbus, Ohio. The solar project could feature an installed generation capacity of 20 megawatts — enough to power the equivalent of 3,280 homes. The company also plans to develop a 7-megawatt PV project at the new JPMorgan Chase Legacy West Complex in Plano, Texas, while also piloting an installation of solar panels at Chase branches in California and New Jersey. 

PG&E offers new funding under affordable housing solar program

Solar Industry Magazine - Jul 31 California utility Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) has announced $10.3 million in funding available for its customers under the Multifamily Affordable Solar Housing (MASH) Program, a state program that offers rebates for affordable solar energy to families in disadvantaged communities. As the utility explains, the MASH program offsets the costs of installing new solar energy systems on multifamily affordable housing buildings, providing clean energy for tenants as well as in common areas like hallways, stairwells, and laundry rooms. On average, PG&E says, the program financially supports about 40 percent of the solar system equipment and installation for an apartment building.

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