Through its Cox Conserves sustainability program, Cox Enterprises is launching a national employee solar program that will provide incentives for employees who choose to install solar panel systems on their homes. The program was announced by Cox Enterprises Chairman Jim Kennedy today in a session on energizing employees at Fortune’s Brainstorm Green conference.
Cox’s employee solar program was initially piloted in California through a partnership with SolarCity and has nearly 100 participants who can pay less for solar electricity than they pay for utility bills.
“When we launched Cox Conserves, we really wanted to encourage our employees to be eco-friendly,” said Kennedy. “Whether you are a corporation or an individual, everyone can do something to help preserve our environment. Our 50,000 employees are constantly sharing ideas that help green our operations. This program lets us help them be sustainable at home.”
Employees who qualify and sign up for the program will receive $500 directly from Cox Enterprises and an additional $500 discount from SolarCity, an exclusive offer for Cox employees. Cox’s major subsidiaries include Cox Communications, Manheim, Cox Media Group and AutoTrader Group. SolarCity currently operates in Ariz., Calif., Colo., Conn., Del., Hawaii, Md., Mass., Nev., N.J., N.Y., Ore., Pa., Texas, Wash. and Washington, D.C. Employees are still eligible for the $500 incentive from Cox Enterprises in states where SolarCity does not currently operate.
Cox Enterprises also rewards employees through the Cox Conserves Chairman’s Cup, an internal program where operating locations are nominated by employees for sustainable projects. A winning location is selected from each of Cox’s major subsidiaries to receive companywide recognition. The winning locations also select a local environmental nonprofit as the beneficiary of a donation from the James M. Cox Foundation. Cox Communications Arizona, Cox Media Group Tampa, Kelley Blue Book, and Manheim Cincinnati were selected as the 2013 winners.
Through the company’s national partnerships with American Rivers and Ocean Conservancy, Cox Enterprises provides employees with volunteer opportunities to clean up their local rivers and shorelines.
Since 2007, Cox Enterprises has prevented approximately 120,000 tons of carbon from entering the environment and saved more than 125 million gallons of water. The company has diverted 15,000 tons of waste from entering landfills since 2013. Cox’s Supplier Sustainability Initiative has engaged suppliers that represent more than $160 billion in products and services.
Cox Enterprises and its affiliated foundations have invested more than $100 million in sustainability and conservation through operations projects and grants to environmental nonprofits.
About Cox Enterprises
Cox Enterprises is a leading communications, media, and automotive services company. With revenues of nearly $16 billion and approximately 50,000 employees, the company’s major operating subsidiaries include Cox Communications (cable television distribution, high-speed Internet access, telephone, commercial telecommunications and advertising solutions); Manheim (vehicle auctions, repair and certification services and web-based technology products); Cox Media Group (television and radio stations, digital media, newspapers and advertising sales rep firms); and AutoTrader Group (automotive media and software solutions). The company’s national consumer brands include AutoTrader.com, Kelley Blue Book, Savings.com and Valpak.
About Cox Conserves
Launched in 2007 by Chairman James C. Kennedy, Cox Conserves is Cox Enterprises’ national sustainability program. Cox Conserves focuses on reducing waste and energy consumption, as well as conserving water. The program engages each of the company’s major subsidiaries (Cox Communications, Manheim, Cox Media Group and AutoTrader Group) and encourages Cox Enterprises’ 50,000 employees and their families to engage in eco-friendly practices. The company’s sustainability goals are to send zero waste to landfill in the next 7-10 years and become carbon and water neutral in the next 25-30 years.
SolarCity® (NASDAQ: SCTY) provides clean energy. The company has disrupted the century-old energy industry by providing renewable electricity directly to homeowners, businesses and government organizations for less than they spend on utility bills. SolarCity gives customers control of their energy costs to protect them from rising rates. The company offers solar power, energy efficiency, and electric vehicle services, and makes clean energy easy by taking care of everything from design and permitting to monitoring and maintenance. SolarCity currently serves 15 states and signs a new customer every three minutes. Visit the company online at www.solarcity.com and follow the company on Facebook & Twitter.
For more information regarding solar programs and initiatives, contact Steve O’Day or Chris Bowers.