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Bank of America invests in green tech

Never ones to miss a hot investment opportunity, the banks are jumping all over green and sustainable technology right now.

The latest is Bank of America, which has just announced an undisclosed investment in a tech company called Field Diagnostic Services Inc (FDSI). The bank plans to use the energy management tech across its banking centres in the US to cut energy costs and carbon footprint by 50 per cent more than what it calls “traditional service methods” – not cut its total energy costs and carbon footprint by 50 per cent, as some publications have mistakenly reported.

The investment is part of Bank of America’s already public $20bn, 10-year programme to promote sustainability not only in its operations but also through its products. As well as the 50 per cent savings compared to standard building control technologies, the bank claims the tech will reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions at its 3,300 banking centres across the US by 14,000 CO2 tonnes.

Sounds impressive but that works out at a pretty modest average reduction of some four tonnes a year for each centre – but, as Tesco says, every little helps.

The blurb in the Bank of America press release says the tech includes handheld energy efficiency diagnostic tools, software and services that enable more rapid and accurate servicing of heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment – cutting energy and operational costs.

But the real story is that the bank has obviously spotted a cool investment opportunity and plans to take this out to the broader market, with FDSI claiming there are some nine million commercial heating and cooling units in the US alone that could become more efficient and cheaper to run using this tech.

Richard Cohen, who leads environmental investments for Bank of America’s Strategic Investments Group, said:

“Bank of America is actively making strategic investments that reduce greenhouse gas emissions while helping spark the new environmentally sustainable economy, and our partnership with FDSI is an excellent example of this strategy. Our collaboration with the Bank’s Corporate Workplace group to make the investment in FDSI takes this new energy-saving technology out of the laboratory and to a level that can truly impact the environment as well as our bottom line.”

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