Energy Conservation for Businesses
Going green conserves resources, prevents pollution, complies with environmental regulations and can increase your profits!
- Turn off all office equipment and lights at the end of every workday.
- Consider ENERGY STAR models that "power down" after a user-specified period of inactivity when purchasing PC's, monitors, printers, fax machines and copiers.
- If you need to print, consider double-sided printing and reusing paper.
- If appropriate, use laptop computers and inkjet printers. They consume 90% less energy than standard desktop computers.
- Use e-mail instead of sending correspondence and faxing documents.
- Retrofit T12 lights with magnetic ballasts to T8 lights with electronic ballasts.
- Replace incandescent light lamps with compact fluorescent lamps.
- Consider lighter colored walls that need less light.
- Install motion detectors to control lighting in frequently unoccupied areas, such as restrooms.
- Retrofit incandescent or fluorescent exit signs with long-lasting, low-energy LED exit signs.
HVAC (heating, venting, air conditioning)
- Install electronic time clocks or setback-programmable thermostats to maximize efficiency.
- Install locking covers on your thermostats to prevent tampering with temperature settings.
In support of the Town’s goal to increase energy and water efficiency, the City Council recently passed resolutions which allow businesses and residents to take advantage of Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing. PACE is a new and innovative way for commercial and residential property owners to pay for energy efficiency upgrades, on-site renewable energy projects, and water conservation measures. PACE funding is provided or arranged for up to 100 percent of a project’s costs, and is repaid with an assessment on the property tax bill over a term of up to 20 years. PACE is a national initiative, but programs are locally based and tailored to meet local market needs. Some quick facts:
- PACE financing is available for all types of commercial, residential, and industrial properties, large and small.
- Financing approvals are simple, but PACE projects must be permanently affixed to the property and save money for the property owner.
- Benchmarking, energy audits, and evaluations can be used to ensure that projects make sense.
- PACE is 100 percent voluntary. In communities that adopt PACE, assessments are only paid by participating owners, and only for their own projects.
Energy Saving Steps for Colma Businesses
Much of our energy is wasted through the use of inefficient equipment and lighting. Review the following steps to see how your business can save energy and money.
1. Determine what equipment is draining your profits
Understand which equipment is using the most energy in your business by conducting an energy audit (see www.fypower.com for a free audit). In the energy audit process, you will discover a variety of cost-effective measures. PG&E offers free energy audits on line, see www.pge.com/mybusiness/energysavingsrebates/analyzer/onlineaudit for more information.
Information on Energy Efficiency Rebates, Incentives & Services for business can be found at: www.pge.com/mybusiness/energysavingsrebates/rebatesincentives/
2. Talk with your property owner (or tenant) about energy efficiency
As a tenant, you may have concerns about the cost-effectiveness of making energy efficiency investments in a building owned by another party. As a property owner, you may have the same concerns about upgrading in spaces where someone else is paying the utility bills. If tenants and property owners work together to improve the energy efficiency of a space – and perhaps even share the costs – property owners can improve the value of their property and renters can reduce their utility bills.
3. See what other businesses are doing
Commercial Best Practices guides offer specific energy saving actions for businesses, see www.fypower.com to get free copies of these guides.