Turn it OFF!




Posted by:
Jessica Pasciak
Energy and Sustainability Services

JLL’s New York office participated in Daylight Hour on June 20th, an event hosted by the non-profit organization Green Light New York, that shut their office lights off for 1 hour at noon.

The goal was to help them better appreciate the positive impact of natural light in their work environment.

Lighting accounts for 1/3 of electricity use by New York City commercial buildings, but many of these lights can be turned off when the sun is out.

More than 45 offices, representing over 631,258 square feet participated in the shut off!

JLL’s 330 Madison Ave office in NYC participated in the event, and achieved some amazing results. Just by turning the lights of during daylight hour, they reduced their office’s electricity consumption over 30% on June 20thGreen Blog

Not only did this help save money, our colleagues loved what the natural light contributed to their office space so much, that they decided to continue it, every Friday at noon, through the end of the summer!

Green Light New York estimated that if the JLL office kept the lights off year-round during day-lit workweek hours, they could save $5,200 and 35,000 kWh – that’s the equivalent of CO2 emissions from burning 26,000 pounds of coal or consuming 3,000 gallons of gasoline!

I hope we all can take a lesson from this great project, and remember to Turn it OFF!

2030 Districts

Jiri Skopek



Posted by:
Jiri Skopek
Energy and Sustainability

Judging from the second summit in Seattle, the 2030 District initiative is taking off! In addition to current established districts in Seattle, LA, Denver, Pittsburgh and Cleveland —several other 2030 Districts are emerging, or are about to declare the full membership. Among those are San Francisco, Toronto, Dallas, San Antonio, Ann Arbor, Detroit, Ithaca and Stamford. Focused typically on downtown areas, the objective of the districts is to reduce the combined impact of buildings within the district in terms of energy, water and transportation. Some districts are taking on other issues such as resiliency.

The annual reports produced by the districts already testify to the success of this effort.  Nevertheless creating a standardized benchmarking is still a challenge. While ENERGY STAR is the norm among a number of benchmarking options, the ULI GreenPrint seems to offer the greatest opportunity to harmonize with real estate industry practice. With the upcoming United Nations Climate Summit on September 23 in New York City, Districts are refocusing on even longer term 2050 targets and possible initiatives abroad. With 40% of new global construction over next few decades predicted to take place in China, as compared to 15% in North America, this is likely to be the focus of significant carbon reductions.


Is Your Sustainability Program Suffering because Your Sponsor Left? 


michael jordan outside small



Posted by:
Michael Jordan
Strategic Consulting


This year I’ve seen an uptick in networking requests from sustainability leaders looking to change companies.

When I ask Why? they tell me they’ve done everything the company is willing to invest in, or, more often, there has been a leadership change above them and suddenly they are not seeing as much support for sustainability as they once were.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics the average worker stays with his/her employer for 4.6 years. Stands to reason, then, that if you started your company’s sustainability program more than a couple years ago, you or your executive sponsor have probably changed or are about to change jobs.

Nothing wrong with moving onward and upward.  But shouldn’t it be part of every leader’s responsibility to institutionalize their hard work before doing so?

If a single executive sponsor leaving the company has radically changed or depleted the commitment to sustainable business, I’m worried that the sustainability team forgot to do an important part of its job, namely the change management part.  Look around – when was the last time you recruited new champions?

It might be time to refresh your stakeholder analysis and update your sustainability business case.  Engage stakeholder groups, understand their new ideas as well as their resistance to advancing resource efficiency and top line growth from sustainable products.  Then systematically communicate, train, and reward new behaviors that will build on the progress you’ve already made!

If you want to see how other companies have been doing this, email me at michael.jordan@am.jll.com.

Are Happy Employees Good Business?

Bob Best


Posted by:
Bob Best
Energy and Sustainability Services

More organizations seem to be addressing issues like employee happiness and well-being.

There is even a “Wellness Building Standard®” that organizations are using to design and operate their workplaces in a more employee-supportive way.

It may be nice that employees like their employers, but is to good business?

Apparently so.

In an 8/6/14 article in Triple Pundit, Raz Godelnik provides a great overview of recent research that suggests a very strong connection between employee satisfaction and financial performance.

She cites a study by Alex Edmans and Chendi Zhang that found “employee satisfaction is associated with positive abnormal returns in countries with high labor market flexibility.”

These same researchers have compared firms noted as “best places to work,” and found significantly higher stock returns.

It appears that investing in employee happiness through programs and workplace improvements is more than good-hearted … it’s good business.


Quiet! Please!




Posted by:
Bob Best
Energy and Sustainability Services

Why aren’t open offices as productive as they could be?

The main culprit is noise.

Great article by Maria Konnikova in The New Yorker (1/7/14)

“In laboratory settings, noise has been repeatedly tied to reduced cognitive performance. The psychologist Nick Perham, who studies the effect of sound on how we think, has found that office commotion impairs workers’ ability to recall information, and even to do basic arithmetic.”

And, blocking out the noise with earphones and music is not the answer.  That, too, interferes with mental acuity.

As many of us working virtually in coffee shops and public places, the same problem applies.  Between public announcements, piped-in music and bad acoustics, we are fighting a losing battle.

I thought noise-cancelling earphones were the answer, but apparently not.

The answer is for office planners and the people who want us to visit their places and buy their stuff (e.g. coffee) to make these environments worker-friendly. That means making them quieter.  Please!