5 Ways to a Green Building
In 2021, a Green Building is more important than it ever has been, and with Earth Day approaching, there’s no better time than now to discuss how your building can go greener.
But what exactly is a “Green Building”? A Green Building can mean a variety of things. Generally speaking, however, it’s when the design, construction, and operation of a building is done so to:
- improve sustainability
- use fewer natural resources
- save on maintenance costs
- improve indoor air quality
- improve comfort
- create less environmental burden
To create a Green-er Building and to incorporate the above initiatives, we’ve laid out a few of the top green building trends you can expect to see in 2021 and beyond.
The Home Office
With advanced digital technology and communication tools available to the masses, businesses now have the opportunity to decrease costs, energy consumption, and improve employee comfortability. That’s right, folks. We’re talking about the rise of the home office (something many of us have experienced first-hand during the COVID pandemic). The home office is a simple solution to the physical needs of a growing business — a solution that can greatly decrease or, in some cases, fully eliminate building expenses and energy consumption.
Keep Reading: HVAC Technology Trends in 2021
The Indoor Air Quality
Back in the day, most businesses wouldn’t have even given indoor air quality a second thought. But these days, it’s at the front of everyone’s mind. Eliminating or decreasing the presence of allergens, dust, bacteria, mold, VOCs, and other harmful particles from within a building is becoming increasingly more important every day (especially with the emergence of COVID-19). This being said, advanced HVAC technology such as needlepoint bipolar ionization has become a topic of discussion amongst building managers and their HVAC partners.
The Digital System
Businesses everywhere are taking steps to switch over to a fully digital system. Not only can a digital system help automate HVAC equipment, but it can also help monitor and maintain your indoor environment. In other words, you can easily track and analyze building activities and conditions, while simultaneously working towards performance benchmarks. Saving money, reducing waste, and improving comfortability are just some of the many benefits a digital system can provide.
ECM stands for Energy Conservation Measure, and businesses are starting to partner with licensed HVAC contractors to take a broader, more analytical approach to cutting back. ECMs can be a great place to start for any business wanting to achieve a greener building — mainly because it can be a low-cost or even no-cost approach to going greener.
ECMs can include steps such as scheduling your HVAC activities strategically and repairing leaks around windows and doors. Other steps can include larger investments such as:
- economizers (limits the use of the compressor by bringing in outside air)
- building automation systems
- variable refrigerant flow HVAC systems
- lighting retrofits
- roofing/window upgrades
Quick Tip: At BMI, we’ve seen many buildings invest in economizers but fail to set them up properly. It’s important to check with a licensed HVAC contractor to make sure your economizer is running the right way, especially since they can result in 25% or more in energy savings.
The Proactive Maintenance
A proactive maintenance solution can obviously prevent breakdowns and keep your equipment running smoothly. But what most people don’t realize is that proactive maintenance solutions go far beyond those benefits. With thorough cleaning and electrical testing done on a regular basis, your HVAC partner can actually help make sure that your equipment is not using more electricity than it should be. This is incredibly important since poorly maintained systems can consume up to 30% more energy than they should be (resulting in more costs and energy waste). Proactive maintenance is a great way to achieve a greener building.
Need help with your Green Building initiatives?
At BMI, we have decades of combined experience helping businesses everywhere create and maintain greener buildings. With an on-site facility assessment and thorough system evaluation and financial analysis, we can show you how to optimize your building and incorporate green building decisions that work for your bottom line and future goals.
Give us a call or fill out our online form to get started.
More than 55% of all building owners & managers approach their facilities reactively; giving something attention only after it breaks. U.S. Department of Energy, Federal Energy Management Program
BMI’s corporate mantra of ‘Where Better Really Matters’ is not only true, but stringently adhered to by their staff. The typical less onerous route of letting someone else deal with an obvious warranty issue would have been the reaction by a number of service companies, especially over a holiday period. The perseverance of BMI’s staff speaks volumes about the company’s integrity and capabilities. Charles J. Gill President Integrated Service Group, Inc.