Swiss Re opened its brand-new solar power plant on the grounds of its Americas Headquarters in Armonk, N.Y. on June 15. In a ceremony held at the 10-acre installation, Eric Smith, president and CEO of Swiss Re Americas, joined by former President Bill Clinton, flipped the switch on the two-megawatt facility, the largest such installation in Westchester County and among the largest in New York state.
The installation is made up of more than 7,700 individual solar panels and will produce, on average, 60% of the daily power required by the 700 employees that work at the Swiss Re campus in Armonk. The $7 million facility is expected to generate energy cost savings that will pay back the installation’s cost within seven years.
“Our mission as a company is to help make the world more resilient,” said Smith. “The activation of this landmark project, and our willingness to help de-risk the renewable energy sector by insuring their projects across the world, underlines our commitment to sustainability."
President Clinton said: "I have spent a lot of the last ten years trying to promote economically responsible ideas to tackle climate change so we can leave an inhabitable planet for our grandchildren and generations to come. That’s why the Clinton Foundation works with people and partners like Swiss Re who embrace our shared responsibility. They are committed to addressing the issue in a way that works for the company, their employees, and the economy as a whole.”
Swiss Re is also a founding member of the RE100 initiative, a global initiative of influential businesses committed to utilizing 100% power from renewable sources by 2020. The construction of the solar power plant in Armonk is one of the biggest efforts that Swiss Re will be making globally to meet that commitment. Similar solar energy plants are currently operating at Swiss Re’s locations in Switzerland, Italy, and the U.K.
The next solar plant project for Swiss Re will be installed at the company’s offices in Bangalore, India. Later this year, Swiss Re will install a 300-kilowatt installation that will provide 20% of energy consumption for the 1,200 employees in that location.