Eric Dominguez, Corporate Director of Engineering, Utilities, and Environmental Affairs, was on hand last Tuesday night in San Diego to receive the Climate Leadership Award for Excellence in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Management—Goal Achievement on behalf of Caesars Entertainment. The annual Climate Leadership Awards are sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Center for Corporate Climate Leadership, along with three NGO partners: Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), and The Climate Registry (TCR). The national awards program recognizes “exemplary corporate, organizational, and individual leadership in response to climate change.”
Winning this prestigious award is a huge accomplishment for Caesars. Prominent experts in the field of sustainability serve as judges and the awardees represent a competitive field of change-makers. We are extremely proud to be among them, recognized for our programs that are making a positive impact on the environment. “Caesars Entertainment has made great strides in reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said Janet McCabe, acting assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “Their commitment to reducing carbon pollution demonstrates that efforts to address climate change are repaid by saving money and energy, while supporting more livable and resilient communities, and a healthier, better protected environment.”
Caesars was recognized for exceeding its five-year goal of reducing GHG emissions by 10%, while also maintaining its high standard for guest experience. Under the EPA’s former Climate Leaders program, Caesars established a 10% GHG reduction goal for U.S. operations between 2007 and 2012. In that period, the company expanded its physical footprint by 18% but was still able to exceed its goal a year early. By 2011, Caesars had reduced its GHG emissions 11.4%. “The leadership that Caesars Entertainment has exemplified in driving GHG reductions throughout its operations is a model for other organizations across sectors to follow,” said Daniel Kreeger, Executive Director of the Association of Climate Change Officers.
Guests are at the center of Caesars’ business so it is imperative that the company meet its environmental goals without negatively impacting the guest experience. The company has been able to achieve this through its CodeGreen strategy which focuses on improving energy efficiency using the latest technologies. Resort properties have replaced lighting with newer, more efficient products, upgraded thermostats to digital versions with occupancy sensors, installed low flow aerators and shower heads, and formalized shut-down procedures in food and beverage outlets. Caesars will continue challenging itself on this front by developing robust programs with the greatest level of impact, while also providing guests the highest standard of service.
Winners were recognized at the Climate Leadership Awards Dinner held during the Climate Leadership Conference on February 25th, 2014. The conference brings together forward-thinking leaders from business, government, academia, and the non-profit community to explore energy and climate related solutions, introduce new opportunities, and provide support to leaders taking action on climate change. The conference is dedicated to addressing climate change through policy, innovation, and business solutions.
Eric Dominguez spoke at the conference on the topic of greenhouse gas goal setting. About the Caesars’ process, he said the company, “took a look at policies and peers to dial in a number that was aggressive.” He went on to discuss intensity versus absolute targets and the choice to ultimately go with an ambitious absolute target. The key to success he said, is to “develop business cases on efficiency projects and discuss investment in the context of a business plan” in order to get the most support from internal leadership.
There were five award categories: Organizational Leadership Award, Individual Leadership Award, Supply Chain Leadership Award, Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management (Goal Achievement Award), and Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management (Goal Setting Award). Caesars is the only entertainment company awarded the Goal Achievement Award; other winners in this category included Boeing Company, Cisco Systems, Ecolab, The Hartford, IBM, Johnson Controls, Kohl’s Department Stores, Mack Trucks and Novelis.