|Integrity Engineering, LLC||P.O. Box 3350||9400 Atlantic Ave., Suite C-100, Margate NJ 08402||Phone (609) 487-7757|
"Go Green". The latest "buzzword" phrase can be heard on the TV news, in print and on the Internet. What does it really mean for your business? In the strictest sense, going "green" means operating in an environmentally friendly way in the use of natural resouses. Recycling, reduce and re-use. You have heard the terms. Does this really make sense for your operation?
Energy conservation in the modern era began in the 1970's with the OPEC oil disruptions. Although the visible impact of that early wake-up call was relatively short-lived, today we are realizing that reducing our dependence of foreign oil means first and foremost, reducing the amount of energy we use in offices, warehousing and manufacturing operations. While much of the "green" efforts relate to new construction - selection of environment-friendly building materials, reducing waste in new construction, and water management - there is still a great deal that can be done in existing buildings to be "green".
Many businesses have come to realize that ignoring the "overhead" of electricity and fuel bills can no longer be a part of a sensible business plan. When the cost of energy rises as a percentage of other costs, its time to look at how to rein in - reduce - the use of these commodities.
"Going green" sounds good, but you need to start somewhere. Your employees are motivated because they are all talking about the price of heating oil and gasoline around the water cooler and on the shop floor. Ask them for their help in coming up with ideas to lower energy usage, recycle or re-use materials. A plan of action can be developed to motivate employees, and good communication will help spread the word.
However, to get really noticeable results, management needs to take concrete steps and make a strong commitment to fund projects that make econimic as well as environmental sense. For measures that will lower energy costs, metrics can be developed to determine how much energy savings will result from implementation. Here's where having an energy consultant comes in handy; you probably don't have the trained and experienced personnel in-house that can do the calculations and come up with the most cost-effective solutions. Prudent energy saving measures will do it all - lower your bills, reduce carbon emmissions that many believe contribute to global warming, and provide some excellent public relations points as well.
There are many products and equipment now being promoted that purport to be "green". Unfortunately, without the proper guidance, these products may be purchased and the end result may be that no real savings materializes. Again, a consultant can closely look at the applicability of these devices and systems to see if they will actually benefit your business, before expending any funds.
Why go green? Because when you do it right, it means cutting costs and improving your public image at the same time.