01.16.2014Community

EDF Fellowship Bringing Big Splash with Water Reduction

By: James Gowen
EDF logo

Environmental Defense Fund’s (EDF) mission is to “preserve the natural systems on which all life depends.” It has worked to solve many prominent environmental issues that our Earth faces today. In partnering with and challenging businesses, EDF has created tools and resources to help companies such as Verizon shape its water and energy usage reduction programs.

One example is EDF’s Water Efficiency Toolkit, which includes a Scorecard and a Water Efficiency Calculator to help create visibility and find savings improvements. EDF also supplies a Cooling System Guide, and sample water audit forms designed to help understand where and for what water is being used.

Verizon has benefited from its long-standing relationship with EDF. Last summer, Verizon hosted Louis Li, an EDF Climate Corps fellow who assisted Verizon in identifying sustainability solutions for the company, and also oversaw the implementation of green developments and projects. 

In 2010, Verizon hosted another EDF fellow who worked in Verizon Headquarters in Manhattan. That summer was a record breaker for high temperatures. The fellow assessed a thermal ice storage system and provided recommendations to Verizon that would result in saving a total of $9.16 million while avoiding 8,700 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year.

Verizon looks forward to working with EDF this coming summer, hosting another fellow, and investigating possible energy and water savings using the Water Efficiency Toolkit.

About the author(s): 

James "Jim" Gowen is a change agent. Since taking on the complementary roles of vice president of Supply Chain Operations and chief sustainability officer for Verizon in 2009, he has enlisted more than 10,000 employees in 23 countries to help reduce the company’s environmental footprint.

Gowen oversees “green” initiatives across Verizon including the introduction of a carbon intensity metric, fuel and energy reduction, employee and supplier engagement, paper suppression, waste reduction and recycling. In his supply chain role, Gowen leads centralized operations with responsibility for more than $2.5 billion in annual through-put.

Gowen earned his master's degree in business administration from Long Island University and his bachelor's degree from Manhattanville College. He is located in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.

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