LinkedIn Opens Building Company Says Is 'Net Zero Energy'
LinkedIn has unveiled what the company says is its first "net zero energy" building at its Sunnyvale campus.
The social networking company held a grand opening Nov. 16 to showcase the building at 880 W. Maude Ave. Sunnyvale Mayor Glenn Hendricks his fellow council members and city staffers were on hand for the tour.
The 40,000-square-foot building generates renewable energy onsite to power all of its energy needs including light, heat, cooling and appliances. The building has 778 solar panels, 20 skylights, LEDs with sensors and 16 electric vehicle charging stations with cords long enough to reach adjacent parking spaces.
The skylights allow some areas of the building to house living trees and plant life. The building's theme is one of bringing the outdoors indoors. It was renovated from an old concrete building originally erected in the 1970s, according to LinkedIn officials.
"This is the first piece of property LinkedIn actually owns in Sunnyvale, so we have more control over what we can do with the building," said Katie Ferrick, LinkedIn's senior manager of community relations. "Instead of tearing down and doing a big new building, we wanted to use the existing structure and bring natural light and sustainability features."
The company says everything in the building is powered by the 245 KW solar panels on the roof. Guests on the Nov. 16 tour were intrigued by the real-time interactive dashboards in the building's lobby that show exactly where energy is being used and what is being powered at different times of the day.
Before the building can officially receive Net Zero Energy building certification, LinkedIn and Integral Group will need to collect 12 months of data to verify that it is indeed producing all of the energy it is using. The design and analysis on the building done by the Integral Group, which has done several Net Zero Energy projects including the Hayward Library and Community Learning Center.
LinkedIn has also signed a letter of intent to opt into the Silicon Valley Community Choice Energy program once it comes online in April. The program will give residents and businesses the choice to purchase clean energy from renewable sources like wind farms. That energy will account for at least 51 percent of the power provided to customers. In the premium that LinkedIn plans to opt into, 100 percent of the energy will be from renewable sources.
"We'll also be sourcing renewable energy for all of our campuses in Sunnyvale starting next year," Ferrick said.
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Posted: 2016-12-05 @ 2:13pm PT
It will be interesting to see how this actually pans out during the winter/rainy seasons. Sounds to me like the net-zero is simply an accounting result on a balance sheet, not an actual disconnect from all non-renewable power sources. I applaud any/all efforts to develop alternative resources, but we cannot pretend that we don't still use the non-renewables to keep the grid stable 24/7.
Posted: 2016-12-05 @ 11:29am PT
Every sun-drenched roof of every commercial building should have solar panels to reduce power costs, to provide owner revenue, to reduce green house gas emissions, and/or to reduce harmful emissions to the atmosphere.