Billion Dollars

revenue annually



increase in steel recycling since July 2021



in revenue between 2016 - 2020

View Our Analysis

The Path to Drawdown: Building Automation Systems

Buildings and construction account for 38% of the total global CO2 emissions and 35% of total energy use. And much of the energy use in buildings is the result of heating and air-conditioning, lighting, information and communications systems, security and access systems, fire alarms, elevators, appliances, and indirectly through plumbing.

Most large commercial buildings in high-income countries have some sort of centralized, computer-based building management system that monitors, evaluates, and controls these systems. That centralized computer-based management is called the building automation system. Building automation systems use sensors to constantly scan and rebalance energy use to maximize efficiency and effectiveness. New buildings can be equipped with a building automation system from the start, and old ones can be retrofitted to incorporate it and reap its benefits.

Adopting automated rather than manual building management systems can result in over 20% more efficient heating and cooling, and 8% more efficient energy use for light, appliances, etc.

Current adoption of building automation systems ranges widely by country. Project Drawdown estimates that, for building automation systems to make a significant dent in global emissions, their adoption needs to grow particularly rapidly in developing countries:

  • <::marker> In 2018, over 75% of buildings in some high-income countries were managed by automated systems while some developing regions have not adopted them at all. 
  • <::marker> By 2050, if building automation systems are adopted by 100% of commercial buildings in OECD countries, 80% in China, and 50% in all other regions, it can help avoid up to 10.48 gigatons of CO2 emissions.

What We Want to See Improve

Track Emissions Metrics

Comfort Systems has committed (p. 31) to track and report environmental consumption metrics and GHG emissions starting 2020. We applaud this commitment and want to make sure that they follow through with it.

Switch to a Zero Carbon Fleet

Comfort Systems’ fleet consumed (p. 31) about 5.5 million gallons of gasoline and 239,278 gallons of diesel in 2020. We urge them to transition their fleet to electric or green hydrogen vehicles to eliminate emissions from this source.

Expand Building Automation Systems Business

Providing building automation systems account for only a small part of Comfort Systems’ overall business. But this is the part that enhances building efficiency and cuts GHG emissions the most. We would like to see Comfort Systems expand this segment of their business much more in the coming years.

Related Building Automation Stocks in the Climate Index

View All Climate Index Stocks →

Allocated Company Description


Johnson Controls (JCI)

JCI offers HVAC and automation systems, allowing building managers to improve energy efficiency. These solutions help reduce emissions from buildings


Comfort Systems USA, Inc. (FIX)

Comfort Systems USA provides automation systems that building managers monitor building energy use. That's the solution for emissions from buildings.


Vivint Smart Home, Inc. (VVNT)

Vivint offers a system that lets home owners control heating, cooling, energy and security. They enhance building automation, which cuts building emissions


Limbach Holdings (LMB)

Limbach provides data-driven building automation, system integration, and energy management solutions. These solutions help reduce emissions from buildings

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