Cool Companies Cool Companies
How the Best Businesses Boost Profits and Productivity by Cutting Greenhouse Gas Emissions


Joseph J. Romm
Format: Hard Cover
Length: 287 pages
Publisher: Island Press
ISBN: 1559637099
Copyright: 1999

Despite ongoing negotiations, consensus has not yet been reached on what action will be taken to combat global warming. A number of companies have looked beyond the current stalemate to see the prospect of reducing greenhouse gas emissions not as a roadblock to growth and innovation but as a unique opportunity to increase profits and productivity. These "cool" companies understand the strategic importance of reducing heat-trapping emissions and have worked to cut their emissions by fifty percent or more. In the process, they have not only reduced their energy bill, but have increased their productivity, sometimes dramatically.

In Cool Companies, energy expert Joseph Romm describes the experiences of these remarkable firms, as he presents more than fifty case studies in which bottom line improvements have been achieved by improving processes, increasing energy efficiency, and adopting new technologies. Romm places efforts to reduce emissions in the context of proven corporate strategies, showing managers how they can build or retrofit their operations with the latest technologies to reduce emissions and achieve quick returns on the investment. Case studies explain:

  • The concept of "lean production" and why systematic efforts to reduce emissions so often lead to productivity gains.
  • How changes in office and building design can significantly increase productivity, greatly compounding gains achieved from increased energy efficiency.
  • Options for "cool" power – from cogeneration to solar, wind, and geothermal energy.
  • Energy efficiency in manufacturing, including motors and motor systems, steam, and process energy.

In profiling successful companies such as DuPont, 3M, Compaq, Xerox, Toyota, Verifone, Perkin-Elmer, and Centerplex, among many others, Cool Companies turns on its head the notion that the effort to combat global warming will come with massive costs to the industrial sector. It is a unique and essential business book for anyone concerned with increasing profits and productivity while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.


“Increasing energy efficiency is a critical component of achieving a sustainable economy, and Cool Companies is a seminal contribution to our understanding of how this may be done in an economically and environmentally preferable manner.”
-- Brad Allenby, Environment, Health & Safety Vice President, AT&T

“A fabulous book, a goldmine of successful projects with the environment as the major driver. Joseph Romm is at last a writer who can rouse the market economists to embrace global warming issues.”
-- Vivian Loftness, AIA, Professor and Head of the School of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University

“To read Cool Companies is to take an enchanting walk through the encyclopedic mind of Joe Romm and to share firsthand the fruits of his years of up-close participation in a revolution in the making. The revolution is, of course, the next industrial revolution, which will undoubtedly accelerate toward a better tomorrow for Earth because of Joe’s landmark work.”
-- Ray Anderson, Chairman and CEO of Interface, Inc.

About the Author

Joseph Romm is executive director of the Center for Energy and Climate Solutions, a nonprofit consulting firm. He served as Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy, where he directed the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. Among his books are Lean and Clean Management (Kodansha, 1994) and The Once and Future Superpower (Morrow, 1992).

Purchase Cool Companies here >>>