As the weather changes, energy expenses can quickly sneak up on your business and can be a hefty toll on your bottom line, so it is important to consider ways in which you can you're your property and operations more energy efficient. As a matter of fact, your business is probably wasting energy every day - even in ways that you would not typically expect. Experts estimate that businesses nationwide spend more than $60 billion on energy each year. As weather patterns shift in New England and winters become warmer due to climate change, making your business eco-friendly will not only help to lower your spending, but also reduce your carbon footprint.
Here are a few tips on how to make your workplace more sustainable:
- Use energy-efficient lightbulbs: Replacing light bulbs is a lot cheaper than other larger appliances, but this small step can save you money. More and more sustainable options are becoming widely available for purchase, but experts recommend using CLF or LED lightbulbs for more sustainable options. Not only do they consume half as much energy but also last longer, making them a worthwhile and relatively cheap investment into your business.
- Get an energy audit: An Energy audit involves a professional inspecting your workplace for any insulation issues, gaps, and leaks. This will allow you to identify and address possible improvements to make by getting an expert opinion that can help you conserve energy and save money.
- Turn off all lights and electronic appliances when they are not in use: Make sure to unplug as many appliances as possible at the end of the day or when they are not in use. This will help you save energy and, in some cases, even improve fire safety.
- Take advantage of natural sunlight: This may sound obvious but use natural light when it is available to you. Natural light not only provides illumination but decreases the burden on heating systems.
- Program thermostats: Programming your thermostat to automatically stop its heating or cooling processes during "off" hours of the day can make a big difference. After all, you don’t want the heat or AC running if nobody is in the office.
- Buy energy-efficient appliances: Nowadays, there is a wide array of choices for energy-saving office equipment. You can start with paper-saving printers, energy-saving computers, efficient desk lamps, and many more.
- Upgrade your windows: Although this can be a more costly step, it is an investment that will help you conserve energy and save money. The best windows for that are those insulated with argon gas between the panes. Although they range up to $600, windows like that will save your energy and keep your workplace warm in the winter and cool in the summer for years ahead.
Making your business more energy efficient starts with observing your day-to-day habits, engaging your employees to be eco-friendly, and making some significant, but worthwhile changes. To begin the process of making your business more sustainable, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory put together a guide that outlines everything you need to know to save on energy costs. Make sure you are strategic about your improvements, follow industry updates, and access all the resources available to you.
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