Over the past several years, our country has been taking big steps to “go green” and be more energy efficient. We’ve phased out incandescent light bulbs, created hundreds of wind farms and solar power stations, increased our fuel efficiency standards, and more.
Many businesses, both big and small, have hopped on the energy saving wagon – Google recently spent $1 billion to fund solar and wind projects; GE upped its annual “cleaner technologies” research spending to $1.3 billion; the Philadelphia Water Department will be spending $2.4 billion on its “Green City, Clean Waters” program. So – isn’t it time you take some steps to save both energy and money when it comes to your business? Here are 21 ways to do it:
- Turn your equipment off at night and on weekends – this includes printers, monitors, fax machines, copiers, etc.
- Use both the front and back sides of the paper when you print
- At night and on the weekends, set the thermostat for 60 degrees during winter and 85 degrees during summer
- Turn outside lights off during the day
- Use ceiling fans (if present) to generate cool air in the summer and push warm air down in the winter
- Use outside air instead of your HVAC system in the spring and fall
- Recycle office paper, ink cartridges, cans, bottles, etc.
- Caulk and weatherstrip windows
- Replace incandescent bulbs with LED or CFL bulbs
- Repair leaks in faucets, toilets, and shower heads (if present)
- Change your HVAC filters regularly
- Use power strips to avoid devices drawing “phantom” power from outlets
- Hand curtains or drapes to prevent heat loss or heat gain
- Replace your refrigerator coils
- Install solar panels to generate electricity
- Replace your HVAC system with a more energy-efficient one
- If your business is small, use laptop computers instead of desktops
- Invest in ENERGY STAR vending machines
- Install skylights to use more natural light than artificial light
- Consider using ground-source heat pumps
- Install motion detectors to turn lights on and off when necessary