Iron Mountain would like to extend heartfelt congratulations to Kevin Hagen, our Director of Corporate Responsibility, for winning the AFCEA Bethesda InnovateIT Award in the Outstanding Achievement – Civilian category. This award is the result of Kevin’s leadership and dedicated work to position Iron Mountain as an industry-leading company that is now at the forefront of resource sustainability and environmental responsibility.
Four years ago, Iron Mountain set out to better understand, share, and address the environmental and social impacts of its global business, resulting in its first detailed greenhouse gas/climate pollution footprint assessment. This found 50% of greenhouse gases were attributable to coal and other fossil fuels used to power facilities in North America. The assessment was an eye-opener, and it was then that we decided to make it a priority to aggressively implement energy efficiency projects into the core of our business, as well as extend that success into our energy-intensive data center business. In addition to reducing our environmental footprint and dependency on fossil fuel, this positioned us to better serve government customers under pressure to reduce their physical footprints and optimize data centers. Iron Mountain gave primary responsibility of this task to a team headed by Kevin Hagen.
Kevin and his team collected and analyzed data, then implemented a four-part energy strategy that focused on usage, costs, and source. The team began to closely study the electricity challenge and possible solutions – engaging with non-governmental organizations like EDF and RMI, in addition to peers and colleagues like Google, Microsoft and Facebook – to learn how they were using renewable energy to solve the challenge. The team started small with on-site solar systems, focusing on developing an understanding of the market, the financial instruments, and relevant legal frameworks, before bringing in more expertise and realizing it would be possible to leverage the company’s scale and new understandings to negotiate large-scale off-site wind power contracts. This process allowed Iron Mountain to craft an approach that offered long-term fixed price contracts for green power at or below current market price for electricity in most cases. This is a game-changer for government agency customers, who have notoriously limited budgets, but still need to meet federal compliance regulations focused on environmental sustainability and data center optimization.
The results for the company speak for themselves – increased energy efficiency and better procurement efforts have cut energy costs over the past four years by around $10 million, and Iron Mountain’s renewable energy efforts have made us one of the top 25 buyers of green power on the Fortune 1000 list. Our renewable energy contracts will provide over two-thirds of our annual electricity in North America by 2018, saving an estimated $2 million per year and stabilizing costs for the next 15 years – all with no capital costs and at or below today’s market cost of power. Today, the Iron Mountain data center business is 100% powered by renewables, which presents an opportunity for aggressive growth in this business, especially in the data center driven public sector, curbing greenhouse gas pollution and introducing stability in the form of predictable future margins on energy costs. For Iron Mountain’s public sector customers, this means they now benefit from affordable, reliable, cost-stable, and climate-neutral renewable energy. These customers can reduce their dependence on fossil fuel, reduce business risk, lock in costs, reduce greenhouse gas impact, and meet specific federal Power Usage Effectiveness compliance metrics.
Because of the work of Kevin and his team, Iron Mountain is now on the leading-edge of environmentally friendly energy sourcing and is generating new best-practices and use cases that will set the formula for how the public sector can improve its energy footprint while reducing associated risks and costs. On behalf of all of us at Iron Mountain, thank you and congratulations to the outstanding accomplishments of Kevin Hagen and his team.