Joseph Julian, Multimedia Products Analyst at Lockheed Martin, saves the brackets from the walls. He saves every piece of AV equipment and ancillary equipment from installations, rooms and offices in an "AV graveyard" and manages them through a complex database that guarantees none of Lockheed Martin's equipment- whatever size- will end up in landfills.
For Julian, who manages the database that links existing equipment to new projects and “dispositioned” equipment to AV electronics recycling, environmental responsibility is a key value. The entire facilities group has undergone LEED AP training and has developed a culture, spearheaded by Julian, to "look first to use equipment that we have" for all projects. Since the efforts began, nearly 100,000 pieces of equipment and ancillary equipment have been saved.
Julian started keeping records of his group’s sustainability efforts in January 2008 and the amount of responsibly recycled AV equipment continues to grow. Since 2008, Lockheed Martin has a host of audiovisual equipment, including CRTs, VCRs, overhead transparency projectors and other broken or obsolete devices. Repurposing initiatives took off in 2009. The result is an improvement to “environmental preservation” and to the company’s bottom line, all demonstrated by the cost metrics that Julian monitors.
When Lockheed Martin took over a new building in Bethesda, Maryland and underwent a renovation, Julian managed the project and made reuse and recycling a priority. The building’s previous tenant had left sound masking and other AV equipment throughout the building. Instead of tossing it, Julian added it to his collection and readied it for future re-use, recovering forty-eight Atlas M980 sound-masking speakers and using them in a new construction project. Julian notes that these efforts “didn’t amount to a great financial savings as compared to the to the total project cost, only about $50.00 each, but knowing that they would not end up in a 30-yard construction debris dumpster was a great moral victory for me.”
Julian makes the connection between personal environmental commitment and corporate environmental responsibility: “if we're excited in our personal lives about being better about our environment, that carries over to the workplace… it touches people on an emotional level.” It also transforms corporate culture and provides new opportunities for saving. In the four years since Julian began the program at Lockheed Martin, he has seen that “vendors are more aware that they want to keep costs down" through implementation of repurposed equipment; project managers and engineers that are “completely open” to the practice; and a convergence of the values of environmental stewardship and fiscal responsibility.
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