MEP CA AB 1103

Corporate Sustainability

MEP Energy Star CertificationrSustainability starts on an individual level, but a person quickly realizes that there is a finite impact one can have as a single unit. As private citizens it is important to do our part by making the best choices we can in our daily lives to reduce our impact on the environment, but private citizens are not the only entities operating on this planet we call home. In our new global society business crosses borders and oceans, and governmental decisions can drastically impact resources and ecosystems. Governments can pass regulations, and nations can enact international agreements and treaties to mitigate these pitfalls. But we all know governments move slowly, and that regimes change and principles and priorities shift with them. These barriers and limitations can leave an environmentalist frustrated and feeling impotent. If we cannot affect change on a societal level and our governing institutions are cumbersome and gridlocked where can we turn to for a cultural course correction toward a sustainable society? The answer for the United States is almost certainly found in the business world.

Consumerism and commerce are often (rightfully so in many cases) pegged as a bane of sustainability. What happens though when industry leaders band together under its banner? The playing field for companies is warping and consumers are increasingly calling for ecological and environmental responsibility. Demand catalyzes change and industry leaders' ears are wide open. Throughout history companies have invested in and facilitated innovation where governments have been hesitant or unwilling to do so. Here we explore a handful of the corporations that are taking action to find more sustainable ways to practice their trades and paving the way to a greener future.

Amazon might not seem like its business model is conducive to sustainability with all the shipping emissions involved and the over-packaged products, but the electronic commerce company has cemented itself as a champion of sustainability. In 2015 Amazon signed the White House's “American Business Act on Climate Pledge”. The very next year Amazon became the largest corporate buyer of renewable energy with its deal to build five solar farms in Virginia. Amazon is also host to solar energy systems on 15 of its facility rooftops with a goal to increase this number to 50 facilities by 2020. In 2016 Amazon also filed a legal brief alongside Apple, Google, and Microsoft supporting the continued implementation of the U.S. EPA's “Clean Power Plan”.

It is the exception and not the rule to find an American family without an Apple product in their home, so it is great news that a company whose products are so pervasive is committed to sustainability. In 23 countries, Apple's operations run on 100% renewable power. As of 2015 93% of the tech giant's electricity use was generated by renewable sources. Apple has committed to increasing this to 100%. The company's data centers are already at 100% renewable energy. Apple was able to divert over 89 million pounds of e-waste from landfills during 2015. Additionally, more than 99% of the product packaging for Apple products was manufactured from paper that was either sourced from sustainably managed forests or recycled.

You can find Apple's Environmental Responsibility Report 2016 at the following link:

When it comes to sustainability Google is at the head of the pack. The tech giant announced this fall that they would be achieving 100% renewable energy powering all of their operations globally. Google's 2016 Sustainability Report (linked below) highlights some of the company's sustainability related endeavors, investments, and business practices. Google's history with green business practices goes all the way back to the company's inception and its first building. The report details how their first desks were made from repurposed materials and how their founders ensured that harmful chemicals were absent from the building's materials. As you can imagine the company now has a much bigger reach and transitively a much larger environmental impact. But they haven't let that stop them from their core values of minimizing waste and maximizing environmental friendliness. The company report highlights a myriad of ways in which Google is a corporate leader for sustainability. Google has been carbon neutral since 2007, its average data centers consume 50% less energy than a typical data center, and six of its data centers have achieved 100% landfill diversion (84% for the total average landfill diversion in 2015). These are all impressive feats for such a massive company, but what may be even more important is their commitment to educating the populace on environmental issues and allowing people to access infinite troves of information. Spreading knowledge and informing opinion are debatably the most impactful of Google's sustainability related pursuits.

You can find Google's 2016 Sustainability Report at the following link:

The entities listed above aren't the only companies committed to finding more sustainable ways to do business. In fact, there is an ongoing global, collaborative initiative of influential businesses committed to achieving 100% renewable energy. RE100 is a group of companies that have signed on to take a leadership role in renewable energy. 88 companies have joined the coalition and made public commitments to use 100% renewable energy by a specified year. These massive companies have all made the same pledge and set the precedent for peers to follow. Some of the companies that have joined RE100 include Starbucks, Wells Fargo, Coca Cola, H&M, IKEA, Bloomberg, Facebook, Wal-Mart Inc., and many more like our previously profiled companies Google and Apple.

As our society and industries transition to a more sustainably minded way of operating it is important to commend the individuals and groups working to help get us there. At Maximum Energy Professionals “MEP” we do our part to help move this transition along as well. Our mission is to provide customized energy efficiency and engineering design services to building owners and managers that allow them to save money on their utilities, while at the same time reducing their carbon footprint and becoming better stewards of the environment. Whether it is through educating our clients, assisting with ENERGY STAR and LEED certifications, or our energy efficiency and design projects, MEP endeavors to do its part to make our buildings and cities as sustainable as possible.

This Blog article has been posted by Maximum Energy Professionals “MEP”, a mechanical engineering firm located in Torrance, CA. For information on Sustainability Services including: ENERGY STAR utility benchmarking and award certification, California AB802 Compliance, City of Los Angeles EBEWE Compliance, ASHRAE energy audits, LEED, and energy conservation/green Mechanical-Electrical-Plumbing systems and equipment design, please give us a call at 310-782-1410 or visit our website at