Case Study: Iron Mountain
Real Green Power – No Compromises
Iron Mountain is committed to environmental stewardship. Their stated goals are to know, share and address the environmental impacts of their business including greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Over the past few years, Iron Mountain has successfully implemented a number of projects to manage and reduce these emissions. In 2017, the company wanted to build on this record by sourcing green energy to meet a portion of its electric load in Texas.
First, we listened. Then, together we went to work to provide Iron Mountain with a solution that fit their criteria:
- Renewable Energy sourced from a local Texas provider
- Green-e certified Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) bundled with the generator’s energy
- A competitive price that would allow Iron Mountain to continue to benefit from historically low pricing
- Matching a load profile that varies month-by-month
RPD selected NextEra’s Blue Summit Wind Farm near Vernon, Texas, to supply energy and concurrent Green-e Certified RECs.
To reduce price risk for both the generator and Iron Mountain, RPD partnered with TrailStone, a leading wholesale energy trading company, to underwrite a monthly index structure, with an option to fix future prices at any point during the contract term. The index further reduces cost and exposure for Iron Mountain by providing protection against mid-month price spikes.
Direct Energy, Iron Mountain’s existing retail electric provider, ensures that the total energy delivered is balanced to match the consumption, and provides billing and settlement services. RPD also enlisted Tenaska Power Services, a leading trading and wholesale services provider, to manage the wholesale scheduling and settle-ment of the transaction.
By using an innovative business approach, applying creative risk management tools, and coordinating a multi-party industry supply team, RPD provided Iron Mountain with a simple, market-based retail contract for local green energy to meet its needs.
The Bottom Line
The structure put together by RPD creates an auditable contract and scheduling path from a local wind farm to Iron Mountain’s facilities. The electricity, while supplied by Direct Energy, is backed by both physical wind power and the concurrently generated certified RECs from the Blue Summit Wind Farm.
- Iron Mountain receives the amount of renewable power they need, when they need it
- Iron Mountain is contractually linked through a wholesale transaction to a local wind farm, but uses the same simple retail contract they use for buying brown power
- Iron Mountain is advancing their overall sustainability objectives and reducing their price risk without having to make a PPA type long-term forward price commitment
- NextEra benefits from a new channel to access the corporate energy market that complements its strategy for providing Blue Summit consistent and reliable off-take agreements for its production