What They Do
Carbon Lighthouse’s Efficiency Production service and patented AI technology platform, CLUES®, reduce carbon emissions and improve operational efficiency in commercial building portfolios. The company’s software draws from over a decade of data across more than 100 million square feet of buildings to find and guarantee energy savings opportunities for commercial real estate (CRE) owners across the United States. IoT sensors and AI-powered software – not expensive capital upgrades – allow Carbon Lighthouse to unlock hidden returns in existing building mechanical systems and turn energy efficiency into tangible long-term savings.
“We make it very easy for our CRE clients to continue to reduce their carbon emissions and find efficiencies in their properties. It’s important that energy efficiency and carbon reduction measures aren’t just one-time fixes. Ensuring value is an ongoing process, because buildings and the people in them change all the time,” says Raphael Rosen, CEO, Carbon Lighthouse.
What’s New Since NGP Invested
After joining the NGP portfolio in 2019, Carbon Lighthouse began working to bring energy savings to National Grid’s business customers. That effort has now grown to include making National Grid’s own facilities more efficient — upholding the ambitious sustainability goals in National Grid’s recently published Responsible Business Charter. By working with Carbon Lighthouse to improve its own operations, National Grid can both lead by example and learn how to continue delivering its services affordably and reliably.
“As we work with our customers to implement the most advanced energy efficiency technologies, it’s invaluable for us to have a deep understanding of our own building energy usage and how we can optimize it,” says Shri Madhusudhan, Vice President of Facilities and Property Services at National Grid.
Carbon Lighthouse can deliver the ability to see more data at more frequent intervals, while providing granular insight into all kinds of factors that impact energy consumption — from weather to occupancy to equipment use. To date, the startup has reduced carbon emissions by over 280,000 metric tons for its customers, and National Grid is eager to help bring that number even higher.
Greenpoint Facility Use Case — Benefits to National Grid and the Communities We Serve
National Grid isn’t just committed to helping its customers achieve energy savings – it also has established ambitious energy reduction targets at its own facilities. To that end, National Grid’s Facility Management team selected its Greenpoint facility in Brooklyn, New York as an ideal candidate to test Carbon Lighthouse. The site is a multi-building operations center covering several hundred thousand square feet and serves as everything from a warehouse and gas meter repair station to a home for many office workers.
“Greenpoint is the perfect opportunity for us to test and understand how sensors and software – not just new equipment – can enable our buildings to run more efficiently while maintaining a high level of comfort as our colleagues carry out a wide range of responsibilities throughout the day and across the seasons,” says Madhusudhan.
The mixed-use scenario at Greenpoint poses unique challenges for energy efficiency, and the bar is raised even higher in a city that aims to be a world leader in sustainability. Carbon Lighthouse has proven up to the challenge. It is helping National Grid go beyond relatively straightforward improvements like installing LED lights or tuning up a boiler unit. The Efficiency Production solution reveals “hidden efficiencies” in the facility’s cooling and heating processes, measures that can be discovered by looking at usage patterns on a large scale.
“We’re looking for these energy trade-offs that are only possible to model and simulate within our software. Because of the data we collect, and because of the 100+ million square feet of buildings on which we have data, we’re able to quickly find operational efficiencies that can create savings,” says Rosen at Carbon Lighthouse.
By working with Carbon Lighthouse at its Greenpoint facility, National Grid could potentially save more than $31,000 annually – or, more than $340,000 over the lifetime of the project – and reduce carbon emissions by over 1,200 tons. That’s the equivalent of keeping 1.3 million pounds of coal from being burned.
Leading the way and delivering impact
What works in Greenpoint promises one day to boost efficiency in National Grid’s portfolio of more than 150 facilities across the Northeast US. And as Carbon Lighthouse itself grows, its customers across the country will see the results.
“Working with a leader in energy efficiency like National Grid demonstrates how utilities can make a bigger climate impact by exploring every area of their business – including the buildings they work in,” says Rosen. “While cutting-edge ‘green’ buildings often receive more attention in the real estate space, the vast majority of the buildings we will all be living and working in over the next half century have already been built. Carbon Lighthouse is hardware- and software-agnostic, which means whatever system is in the building, we can evaluate it and determine how to optimize those systems to balance tenant comfort with energy and carbon reduction goals.”
With commercial buildings accounting for as much as 40% of carbon emissions in the US, finding the “hidden efficiencies” in these properties will be a pillar of any climate strategy. NGP’s investment in Carbon Lighthouse helps keep National Grid at the forefront of those efforts, while bringing more value and understanding to the company’s own operations and customers.