The fact that so many new trees have been appearing in North Texas – from downtown Dallas to the groves of Plano to the campus of ACU and elsewhere – may be a mystery to some.
However, the explanation is actually not so mysterious. TXU Energy is the largest energy provider in the state of Texas and is also the driving force behind one of the most ambitious beautification projects in the nation.
Together with the Texas Tree Foundation, TXU Energy is helping make North Texas greener, one tree at a time. The company plants trees for neighborhood associations, schools, nonprofits and municipalities. Through the company’s partnership with TTF, it also maintains the TXU Energy Urban Tree Farm and Education Center.
Trees provide numerous social, economic and health benefits. Besides adding beauty to the landscape, they also produce oxygen and mitigate the effects of urban heat islands. And, besides, who can’t relate to the relief of finding shelter from an unrelenting sun under the canopy of a nice, big tree?
The Texas sun can be brutal, including for children at school. Unfortunately, many urban school campuses and other urban heat islands were devoid of even a single tree.
Thanks to the planting efforts of TXU Energy, school campuses are being provided the shelter of new trees. On Dallas school properties alone there have been more than 53,000 new planting sites, identified by a GIS Roadmap Model for Urban Tree Planning & Planting. In total, the Texas Tree Foundation’s State of the Dallas Urban Forest identified more than 1.8 million planting sites throughout Dallas.
One of the reasons for this combined effort is that trees are natural air conditioners. In fact, the evaporation from just one tree has the cooling effect of 10 air conditioners running for 20 hours per day. But TXU Energy’s commitment to savings doesn’t stop outdoors. The retail electric provider also recently doubled-down on their ongoing efforts to save their 1.7 million residential and business customers money – as well as simplify their overall energy experience.
At the recent SAP for Utilities event, Muneesh Narakula, technical architect at TXU Energy, said that customers can now enjoy a personalized experience “on the fly” by logging in to their accounts with TXU Energy from any device, as well as receive important text alerts about service and billing. Narakula also stated that one of the crucial functionalities of the solution’s intuitive new user interface is that the company has dramatically simplified the billing and product experience of their customers.
With guidance from SAP Professional Services, TXU Energy implemented SAP Hybris Billing and integrated it with the company’s core SAP ERP application in just six months. As a result, the company can now rapidly design and deploy new customer-centric product offers and evolve them quickly to meet fast-changing market demands.
In other words, the company is using technology to better serve their customers – even better than they already do.
“SAP has always been there for us, and is aligned with TXU Energy’s vision of where we want to be,” said Narakula.
Clearly, that vision for the future also includes a focus on the enduring beauty of nature. The greenery already sprouting up all over Texas is a testimony to the determined role of an energy company committed to beautifying the surroundings of their customers, one tree at a time.