Green Business Bureau Blog
Green Business is Growing in 2014!
This month we’re highlighting GBB members who are making waves for their innovations in sustainability. Our booming membership includes diverse companies from almost every industry, business size and geographic location. Why? Because the latest research shows that the growth rate for green business is rising faster than the conventional economy. As a green business, you’re positioning your company to lead both today and tomorrow.
Welcome to Our New Members and Welcome Back to Our Renewing Members!
ARG, St. Petersburg, FL – All Green Gas, San Antonio, TX – Native First, Bakersfield, CA - Palm Beach Kennel Club, Palm Beach, FL – Clearview Systems, Fort Worth, TX –SecondwindCPAP, Tracy, MN – Green Van Lines, Dallas, TX – TG Embedded Systems, Cleveland, OH – Natural Daddy Green Web Hosting, Cincinnati, OH – Comeland Maintenance Service Co., Los Angeles, CA - 2Clean Commercial Cleaning Services, National Harbor, MD - Central Cleaners of Chestnut Hill, Boston, MA - E-Con Cleaning, Perth Western, Australia - Centurion Janitorial Services, San Francisco, CA –Tim Barkley Law Offices, Mount Airy, MD - Clean Sweep Group Inc, Beverly Hills, CA – B. Schreiner Excavating & Drilling, East Bay, CA - SmartKlean, Miami, FL - Superior Tubular Service, Houston, TX - City Express Exterminating, New York, NY - The Overton Firm, Little Rock, AR - AVI Home Improvement, Woodmere, NY - Sumner Environmental Inc., Coram, NY - Holbrook Days Inn, Pomona, CA - Hawthorn Suites Tempe, Tempe, AZ -Brook Farm Veterinary Center, Patterson, NY - Imprint Express, Framingham, MA – Web Promotions Internet Services, Toronto, Canada – Super8 Ukiah, Ukiah, CA – Lodge at Tiburon, San Francisco, CA – Holly Cleaners, Newton, MA – Veltimera, Los Angeles, CA –re:form YOGA, Carlsbad, CA – Essentia, Montreal, Canada – Clean Streak, Inc., Mills River, NC – Professional Building Maintenance, Sun Valley, CA – Ho Dental Company, Las Vegas, NV – Centurion Janitorial Services, San Francisco, CA – New Castle Lawn & Landscape, Birdsboro, PA - Agenthr Recruiting Group (ARG), St. Petersburg, FL –Quench, King of Prussia, PA
GBB Members Making Waves
GBB member Big Chef Online just received a proclamation from the mayor of Broward County, FL, declaring February 11, 2014 as “BIG CHEF APPRECIATION DAY”. Congrats to Big Chef, who makes delicious, healthy food to cater any occasion.
Always leading the way to happier teams and greener companies, GBB member,FlexJobs, was recently interviewed by CSR Wire to share insights on how telecommuting benefits your employees and the environment. Don’t forget to join GBB in supporting FlexJobs’ “1 Million for Work Flexibility campaign” to increase worker morale and decrease our collective carbon footprint.
GBB member, Silvana K Designs, produces beautiful jewelry handmade in the USA from 100% recycled materials. Last month they recycled a record high 350 pounds of copper. That’s turning a lot of trash into treasure!
We also want to acknowledge one of GBB’s most inspiring members, Christine Feldmann of 2012 Rio.Designs. She’s currently competing to become the face of e.l.f. Cosmetics to promote humane and eco-friendly beauty products. Please join us in voting for Christine!
Check out GBB’s new mobile website (on your smartphone), built by Mobilelohas: http://gbb.inapp.mobi/
The environmental footprint left by businesses is large. Office buildings use up more than 40 percent of our total energy in the United States, as well as 70 percent of the electricity. That doesn’t even take into account the waste going on inside. But many businesses are taking more responsibility for their impact on the environment both inside and out.
An eco-friendly business can do more than just help the environment. Green businesses attract more investors, eco-conscious customers, and more employees. When creating a green plan for your business, couple changes to your business practices with the redesign of the building to achieve the best results.
The Eco-Friendly Office
Some steps to go green inside the office are low-cost and easy but can make a big impact. Replace styrofoam cups with reusable cups, use eco-friendly coffee, and place recycling bins around the office. However, there are bigger steps you can take to make your office greener.
- Green purchasing practices – When making purchases, consider the impact by buying recycled paper and combining shipping to reduce packaging. Consider buying gently-used office furniture and other eco-friendly office supplies.
- Go paperless – Reduce the amount of paper your office uses as much as possible by emailing, calling on the phone, and video conferencing. Utilize online presentations to avoid printing out packets and colored print-outs. Change marketing to online rather than mass mailings. Recycle paper as much as possible.
- Greener office machinery – Purchase combination office printer/fax/scanners to decrease energy use. Recycle old office machines to keep them out of the landfills. Only purchase Energy Star office equipment to be certain they are efficient.
- Choose eco-friendly professionals – From the redesign stages to the construction, hire professionals who are dedicated to being eco-friendly. They are dedicated to creating and building structures that are safe, comfortable, and productive. Select a professional who takes into account such factors as location, waste, material use, and local availability.
- Select which changes to make – Some elements that help the environment include installing smart climate controls, energy-efficient windows and shades, and smart lighting systems. Smart plugs and timers have high benefits. For more ambitious projects you may want to consider replacing your roof with a green roof.
- Reduce construction waste – Reduce the amount of waste going into construction dumpsters by planning ahead to reuse the materials created from demolition. Recycling materials reduces the cost and allows for a smaller dumpster to be used. For dumpster resources, click here.
- Choose eco-friendly materials – Take a look at the materials you are using in the construction. Avoid using products from the “Red List.” Be aware of not just using renewable resources, but also toxins and chemicals.
Greener Building Design
Remodel your office to incorporate sustained green benefits. The higher cost of making the change to an eco-friendly office can pay off in the long run for both your business as well as the planet:
Energy efficiency is one of the most powerful ways of greening your business. With increasing utility costs and climate change, you can enjoy savings by reducing overall energy use and reduce your company’s impact on the environment. Here are 6 Smart Tips from the Green Business Bureau to help you save electricity and enjoy lower utility bills:
- Contact your local utility company and ask for a green commercial assessment to pinpoint specific areas of energy waste.
- Install light switch occupancy sensors and/or automatic dimming switches in proper locations to ensure you are notwasting energy when no one is present.
- Use a smarter power strip or surge protectors to reduce phantom charges (also called “vampire power”).
- Make sure all EXIT signs use LED or high-efficiency alternatives.
- Install an ENERGY STAR programmable thermostat to automate your HVAC system.
- Consider weather stripping around windows and doors to eliminate loss of cooled air and reduce outdoor air from entering your office building.
Click here to learn industry-specific green business practices.
Telecommuting is a great way to save money, gas, office infrastructure and reduces one’s carbon footprint. GBB’s Platinum Member FlexJobs encourages staff members to use CFL or LED lights in their home offices, use natural light and air whenever possible, eliminate printing, and have an oxygen-filtering house plant in their home office. Click here to learn 5 ways to integrate telecommuting with your CSR Vision.
Please vote for Christine Feldmann, Founder and Director of Rio Designs, to help her become Face of e.l.f. Cosmetics. You can vote multiple times until April. Click on the following link to vote:
Here is Christine’s story: “My passion is working with organizations that pride themselves in branding their product via cruelty free processes and whom donates a portion of their proceeds for further research to find a cure for cancer. My strong will to live and give back to society has become a great part of my success in my business including my personal life. Experiencing a pre- cancer scare, today I am cancer free, having overcome a spinal cord injury and severe adult – chicken pox within the last three years span. Today I thrive in health and in my business, continuing my venture in the PR Marketing and Branding – Fashion Production Industry creating and partaking in collaboration work among makeup artists and models. It would be an honor to be part of a wonderful cosmetic line and share my experience with other business women within the industry. Thank you for the opportunity and consideration. Yours truly, Thank you! Much love, prosperity, health and wealth. =I= Chris”.