At MassMutual, we believe our efforts to address environmental sustainability are more than just good corporate citizenship. These efforts create opportunities to reduce our operating costs which, ultimately, benefit the people who rely on us every day: our policyholders and customers. Throughout everyday business operations, we work to reduce our environmental footprint by effectively managing our facilities and the natural resources we consume.
The operations noted in this section include our home offices in Springfield, MA and Enfield, CT and our Learning and Conference Center in Chicopee, MA.
LEED Certification for Existing Buildings
MassMutual’s main campus on State Street in Springfield, which includes 11 buildings making up 1.4 million square feet of space, is Leadership in Engineering and Environmental Design for Existing Buildings (LEED-EB®) Silver certified by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC®). This certification required numerous updates and changes to the building’s facilities and infrastructure, including updating the company’s data center and water-chiller system, along with installing new water-efficient plumbing fixtures.
As part of our ongoing renewable energy strategy, MassMutual has installed more than 1,700 photovoltaic and thermal solar panels on the roof of our headquarters in Springfield. The panels provide 50 percent of the building's hot water needs and three percent of its power. Over their lifetime, the panels will reduce our carbon emissions by an estimated 5,500-plus metric tons.
Lighting and Energy Use
Our comprehensive energy efficiency program ranges from high-efficiency lighting systems and "daylight harvesting" (systems that automatically turn off electric lights when the sun is bright enough to provide natural light) to updating our Data Center. In fact, through server virtualization and ventilation upgrades, our ongoing Data Center project has helped reduce our carbon footprint by over 40 percent, and will significantly curtail energy costs over the long run. Cleaner-burning fuel is used in the Data Center to heat the building and operate the standby generators. The low sulfur fuel will reduce environmental emissions by 97 percent and the sulfur content will be reduced from 500 parts per million (ppm) to 15 ppm.
MassMutual has introduced technologies that reduce paper use, including online insurance application forms, “electronic” insurance policies and an electronic prospectus delivery option for our retirement plan sponsors and participants. Employee demand drove efforts to provide cafeteria alternatives to Styrofoam plates and cups. The resulting use of over 2,250 refillable “green” mugs saves more than 200,000 large Styrofoam cups annually. We also save approximately five million gallons of water annually from installing 500 high efficiency plumbing fixtures.
In correlation to MassMutual’s high emphasis on waste reduction, the company also maintains a comprehensive recycling program and encourages its employees to get involved by providing recycling receptacles in every work space and hallway in its buildings. In addition, the company purchases eco-friendly office furniture and carpets that promote good air quality and are made from recyclable materials.
MassMutual has installed four free electric vehicle charging stations for employees on the Springfield and Enfield campuses. Ten bicycles and adult-sized tricycles, as well as a Jeep Liberty hybrid and new electric utility vehicle, have been added to our fleet of Security and Facilities vehicles, reducing the need to drive fossil fueled facilities vehicles on our main Springfield campus.
Additionally, MassMutual is a strong supporter of carpooling and ride share vanpooling programs. Combined, nearly 300 participants are using these transportation options, including specially designated carpooling parking spaces on both the Springfield and Enfield campuses.