Jan. 1, 2015
Workplace Charging Success: lynda.com
The charging stations have created a community of PEV drivers and exposed other employees to PEVs, helping them become familiar with this technology.
lynda.com paved the way in the online learning space long before the age of broadband and digital video. Once again, the company finds itself at the forefront of innovation - this time in sustainability. lynda.com, alongside other environmentally-conscious employers across the U.S., joined the Department of Energy's Workplace Charging Challenge. As a partner in the Challenge since March 2013, lynda.com has committed to providing plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) charging access to its workforce and to helping expand America's PEV charging infrastructure.
Workplace charging complements lynda.com's larger sustainability program, which aims to alleviate the impact of employees' commutes by providing incentives for employees to carpool, use public transportation, and ride bicycles to work, in addition to encouraging the adoption of electric vehicles.
Inspired by a growing PEV interest in the local market and interest from their 350 current employees and potential candidates for cheaper, easier, and more environmentally friendly commutes to work, lynda.com installed its first on-site PEV charger - a "Juice Bar" with two Level 2 and two Level 1 outlets - at the company's Carpinteria, CA headquarters. The chargers were intended to serve both PEV-driving employees as well as the fleet of small PEVs that service the company's 12-acre campus.
The positive impact of having PEV chargers on campus was noticeable from the start.
"My family decided to lease a Nissan Leaf after realizing that the charging station was available," said Lauren H., Lead Production Marketing Writer.
Initially, the company's first charger served two PEV-driving employees. However, since installation, five new employees have signed on to use the charging stations. In response to this growing demand for additional access to charging at work, the Carpinteria campus has installed a second dual charger in summer 2014.
The success of the company's workplace charging does not end in Carpinteria, however. The benefits of workplace charging are also available at lynda.com's new office in San Francisco, which is housed in a LEED certified building that offers two charging stations.
As lynda.com adds to its charging infrastructure, the number of employees who drive PEVs is growing in parallel.
"The charging stations have created a community of PEV drivers and exposed other employees to PEVs, helping them become familiar with this technology," said Facilities Supervisor and PEV driver Dana Jennings. PEV-driver George M. joked that the program is becoming too successful: "We have more PEVs than ever and a need for even more chargers," he said.
Overall, the commuter program has proven to be a success and is making a difference. The facilities department of lynda.com estimates that the eight PEV commuters save 36,000 pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) equivalent each year. From May 2013 to May 2014, the overall commuting program reduced CO2 emissions by an estimated 90,000 pounds.
And lynda.com employees appreciate the company's efforts. As Lauren H. puts it, "I think the plug-in electric vehicle charging stations that lynda.com has installed are proof that lynda.com cares about sustainability and our environment."