Building on its existing energy efficiency and conservation efforts, the company annonced today that it has purchased renewable-energycertificates and carbon offsets that together neutralize the remainingenvironmental impact of the company’s global operations.
Revenue from the sale of renewable-energy certificates (RECs) and carbon offsets (COs) provides important economic support to projects involving renewable energy and greenhouse-gas-emission reduction projects. Byfinancially rewarding these projects for their environmental benefits,RECs and COs help encourage the development of similar projects.
This year’s purchase makes NYSE Euronext carbon-neutral for 2010. TheRECs and COs, which are Green-e certified, are purchased retroactively;so that the company can measure how much energy was used and purchasethe appropriate amount of certificates and offsets to match it.
The RECs, purchased from 3Degrees, match the company’s electricityusage. Each REC represents the generation of one megawatt-hour ofelectricity from renewable resources such as wind, solar, geothermal,low-impact hydroelectric, or biomass.
The carbon offsets, also purchased from 3Degrees, represent one metricton of carbon dioxide-equivalent greenhouse gas emissions reduced oravoided. All aspects of carbon emission at NYSE Euronext were taken into account, ranging from electricity usage and onsite generators, tovehicles and employee travel. The company says the project involvedmonths of planning, assessment, measurement and verification.
NYSE Euronext’s green power and carbon balancing commitment will helpavoid an estimated 91,508 metric tons of CO2 greenhouse gas emissions.
Using calculations from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’sGreenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator, this amount is equivalent tothe CO2 emissions generated from consuming or burning 212,809 barrels of oil, or the emissions from the use of electricity at 11,105 averagehomes, or the carbon sequestered annually by 19,511 acres of forestpreserved from deforestation.
This initiative complements other energy efficiency and conservationefforts at NYSE Euronext. For example, earlier this year the companycompleted the installation of an array of solar electricity panels atits Basildon, England data center, which is the largest installation ofits kind in the United Kingdom – capable of meeting up to 20% of thedata center’s current power requirements.
NYSE Euronext says it is actively considering similar initiatives forits U.S. locations. The company also was named last year to the DowJones Sustainability Index and the Carbon Disclosure Project’s S&P500 Leadership Index.