Smarter Business: Greening Advisor
Appliances, electronics, and HVAC
Residential and commercial buildings emit 40 percent of all global warming pollution and consume vast amounts of energy every day for heating and cooling, ventilation, electronics, lighting, and other appliances. By increasing the efficiency of these energy consumers, your company can save money while improving environmental performance. See the Energy section for more ideas on ways to save energy.
Visit the federal government’s Energy Star Products Database for listings of the most energy efficient products on the market for a wide range of product categories. Also consider including Energy Star and energy efficiency specifications in contracts and requests for proposals. Examples of contract language and additional product specifications can be found at EPA’s Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Database. EPA’s Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) can also help you specify cost-competitive, high-performance, and environmentally preferable computer desktops, laptops, and monitors.
For a list of energy efficiency incentives and rebates in your state, visit the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency.
Sample Contract Language
- When buying an appliance, always try to buy one that is certified by the EPA’s Energy Star program.
- If Energy Star does not rate a particular appliance, purchase the most efficient model feasible.
- Look for energy-saving features such as programmability and power-save functions.
- Many products use energy even when they’re turned off. Look for products that use as little energy as possible while in “off” mode.
Sample Letter to Current Suppliers
Our company has initiated an effort to improve its environmental performance in all aspects of its operations. Because you are our supplier of electronic/HVAC equipment, we would like to meet with you to discuss this objective in more detail. We would also like to discuss ways to cost-effectively switch to more-efficient products within the next few years.
Energy use is one of the principal contributors to air pollution and global warming. By reducing our consumption of energy, we can reduce these impacts and save money at the same time. We would like to reduce as much as possible the harmful effects associated with our operations, and we would like to speak with you about more efficient alternatives to the products that we are currently using.
We look forward to discussing this with you. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.
- Energy Star
- EPA’s Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Database
- U.S. Department of Energy: Energy Efficient Appliances and Electronics
- New York City: Manual for Quality, Energy Efficient Lighting
- Energy Efficient Computers and Monitors Database
- Environmental Benefits and Cost Savings Calculator for Purchasers
- Energy Star Savings Calculators
- Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT)
- Climate Saving Computing Initiative (Climate Savers)
- Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE)
When buying an appliance, always try to buy one that is certified by the EPA’s Energy Star program.
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