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Ernst & Young Goes Green with Energy-Efficient LED Lighting from Philips

Ernst & Young LLP usually helps its clients save energy with their sustainability strategies, but this year, the firm will be saving big itself with energy-efficient lighting from Philips.The global professional services leader enlisted the help of JAS consulting, Philips Lightolier Energy Services and lighting design firm One Lux Studio, to retrofit 32 floors of its US headquarters in New York City with LED lighting solutions from Philips. The new lighting will not only save the company close to $1 M per year in energy and maintenance costs, it also will cut its lighting energy use by roughly 2.9 million kWh per year and reduce its CO2 emissions by approximately 2 million pounds annually.

“Our lighting project is helping us to deliver on our commitment to environmental stewardship,” said Brent Summers, Director, Americas Enterprise Support Services, Ernst & Young LLP. “Over the past few years we have been able to reduce our carbon footprint from energy. This new lighting system will add an even greater reduction. Five Times Square is seeking an Energy Star rating, and the lighting work will be a large part of our application.”

Ernst & Young LLP’s Times Square office lighting system is heavily utilized by its more than 5,500 employees. With its traditional lighting system, the approximately 650,000 Useable Square Foot, Class A office space consumed roughly 6.2 million kWh annually.

JAS consulting worked with the Philips Lightolier Energy Service Group and One Lux Studio to find a suite of energy-efficient products that significantly decreased the building’s energy use to meet Ernst & Young LLP’s sustainability goals. The team designed customized LED fixtures, assessed lighting control systems and coordinated with the local labor union to ensure a smooth installation of lighting systems throughout the building’s open office areas, private offices, conference rooms and common areas.  The team also identified utility rebates that allowed Ernst & Young to lower its upfront costs by more than 13%.

“Ernst & Young has looked at the return on investment for their new lighting system and has seen that it gives them better light quality, a lot more control over their energy usage and reduces maintenance, making good business sense,” said Zia Eftekhar, chairman of Philips Lighting North America.  “More and more forward-thinking businesses are looking at the long term value of their lighting investment and realizing that LED technology can lower their environmental impact and their electricity usage.  Working with partners such as JAS consulting and One Lux Studio, we can ensure that we meet our customer’s light quality and sustainability goals with long-lasting, green technologies.”

In total, the new lighting system will reduce Ernst & Young LLP’s lighting-related energy and maintenance costs by more than 50% a year and its annual lighting energy use by 54%. It has also improved the facility’s quality of light. Many energy upgrade projects focus on wattage reduction only, but One Lux Studio approached the project from a qualitative and aesthetic standpoint.

“The facility was designed to achieve a ‘timeless’ aesthetic, and we needed to make sure that any energy measure we implemented maintained this aesthetic” said Stephen Marguiles, president of One Lux Studio. “Luminaires that were commonly used when this project was originally designed were not necessarily very efficient. The new equipment optimized LED and flourescent efficacies, as well as ensuring light levels were ‘right sized’ for each space type.  Best of all, the design team fast-tracked construction to ensure that the lighting work affecting the tax departments was completed by January 2012—just in time for the beginning of tax season.”

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