As much as it’s crucial for businesses to stay competitive with their technology, they also must stay on the cutting edge of sustainable practices in the workplace. There are two ways to make a workplace sustainable: implementing technology in an existing location to make renewable energy or using environmentally friendly materials and building practices to construct a new location.
Constructing a Building with the Environment in Mind
We explored several trends in sustainable construction in our last blog post. If you have the option to construct your building from scratch, you must consider creating a LEED-certified building. The US Green Building Council is an organization that works with architects and engineers that are certified in green building practices. Using these skilled professionals in your project will help ensure your building gets the LEED-certified commercial stamp of approval.
A building that receives this high level of certification will be designed to operate at maximum health and productivity for its occupants, create less waste, and have an overall lower value of construction and upkeep. Many states even offer tax incentives to businesses that use efficient and renewable energy practices.
Retrofitting Your Existing Company Resources
According to House Method, another way a business can introduce eco-friendly practices into their location is to power the facility through solar energy. There are many pros and cons for using solar panels, with the biggest pro being that the sun is one of the environment’s most sustainable resources and most panels can be placed on the building’s rooftop. The FORBES Tech council warns to investigate the value of buying panels versus renting them from the local power company.
Additionally, make sure your company is using natural resources in a responsible way. A simple change in the office kitchen, for example, can be to install a tap water filtration system instead of getting water coolers delivered once a week.
Switch to Sustainability
Once your business is up and running, be considerate of the lighting used in the building. Hallway and corridor lights should have a timer with dimmer settings to turn off when employees have left for the day and older light bulbs should be exchanged out for ENERGY STAR-rated bulbs, which are available for commercial and home usage. The newer generation of bulbs use less wattage to supply the same amount of light and burn at much cooler temperatures. Energy star ratings can be found on many other products such as refrigerators, air conditioners, and office essentials like printers.
About the Author: Kay Pascale is a writer and blogger. When she's not writing about sustainability or home improvement, she enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with family.