By Robert Holdsworth
President of Energy Edge Solutions Corp.
Most people realize that reducing the utility cost center for a business or organization is a good thing for the bottom line but there are several other financial benefits to reducing energy consumption.
The US Green Building Council says that on average a “green building” enjoys, 30-50% reduced energy use, 35% reduced carbon emissions, 40% reduced water use and 70% reduced solid waste.
But does that truly translate into real value to a building owner or company in terms of value beyond simply lower utility costs? Following are some facts that detail the additional, verifiable benefits of “going green”.
Public Relations Opportunities:
Improving the efficiency of your facility, conserves natural resources, reduces pollution and emissions generated via energy production, protects the environment, and reduces solid waste accumulation.
By accomplishing the above, improving the efficiency of your facility gives you the perfect opportunity to garner constructive, free publicity and allows you to portray your company in a positive light and gives the local and global community a picture of your company as a responsible corporate citizen and steward of the environment.
Significant Financial Benefits:
In addition to reducing your utility bills, “going green” reduces maintenance, replacement and production downtime costs due to greater longevity of everything from lighting systems to HVAC systems to production equipment. It also improves the asset value of your property and increases profitability. In addition it improves tenant attraction and retention for building owners and leads to higher premium tenants and higher end leases. Furthermore shows the strength and astuteness of your executive management and attracts customers and investors. Lastly it improves worker productivity and safety and reduces absenteeism and turnover via improved comfort, lighting and indoor air quality. According to the US Green Building Counsel, “green buildings” save $58 billion of sick time and add $180 billion in increased worker productivity annually.
Ultimately a go / no go decision by a company or organization regarding improving energy efficiency should be based largely on cost effectiveness measures and rate of return on the initial investment. However, it would be a mistake not to acknowledge and consider these other significant benefits of “going green” as part of the decision making process.