MetLife is a leading global provider of insurance, annuities and employee benefit programs serving 90 million customers. The company recently took out an energy savings policy with GE—upgrading to Evolve™ LED outdoor lighting in parking lots at 10 office locations and switching to more energy-efficient T8 fluorescent indoor lighting at its 650,000-square-foot administrative center in St. Louis.
After learning of the advantages of LED outdoor lighting, John Chambers, assistant V.P. of facility services and sustainability for MetLife, met with GE to explore the possibilities.
"When we first talked about the lighting, GE had just come out with a new LED outdoor fixture," recalls Chambers. "We were introduced to GE's lighting technology team and decided to have them perform a test for us. We installed several fixtures at one of our Pennsylvania properties and were very impressed with the improved visibility in the lot. That's when we made a multi-site upgrade part of our critical plan for the coming year."
MetLife replaced existing high-pressure sodium (HPS) and metal halide parking lot lights at eight administrative facilities and two data centers in several states including New Jersey, Ohio and Rhode Island. The lots, comprising 700 parking spaces and 100 fixtures on average, are now lit by GE's Evolve LED Area Lights.
MetLife also went in search of indoor energy savings—turning its attention to new fluorescent office lighting at its 650,000-square-foot administrative facility in St. Louis. More than 7,000 old T12 fixtures—consuming nearly 5.1 million kilowatt hours (kWhs) of electricity a year—dominated ceilings in the two-story building, home to 950 MetLife associates.
GE experts performed a walkthrough and recommended a simplified design—lamps of many types, sizes and colors would be changed to a single lamp type using one of two ballast types. Nearly 13,000 of GE's F28 T8 linear fluorescent lamps were installed at the St. Louis office, where the new LFL design also utilizes more than 8,000 GE UltraStart® Programmed Start (PS) ballasts and a handful of UltraStart dimming ballasts.
The ballasts provide a ‘soft start' that can significantly extend lamp life opposed to standard instant start ballasts. They also provide greater energy-savings potential when used in a lighting design that incorporates occupancy sensors, daylight harvesters or other automated light controls.
Results & Benefits
Combined, these new lighting solutions will save MetLife approximately $360,000 a year while consuming about 3.5 million fewer kWh of electricity.
Thanks to GE's Evolve LED Area Lights, MetLife will now use nearly 1.1 million fewer kWh to illuminate its parking lots—equaling a $164,000 utility cost savings per year (based on a $.15 kWh rate and 4,380 hours of operation). The switch from T12 to T8 linear fluorescent indoor lighting at its St. Louis office, meanwhile, offers an additional 2.4 million kWh savings, or $196,000 annually (based on a $.08 kWh rate and 5,600 hours of operation).
"We think we're on the cutting edge of this technology and among the first Fortune 500 companies to commit to LED lighting in its lots," Chambers said. "MetLife has taken big steps to meet its environmental goals this past year with help from GE and its lighting solutions."
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