Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) developed the Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP), which assists small businesses within the state in recognizing and implementing the steps needed to increase profitability by cutting energy costs.
Since its inception in 1980, Pennsylvania SBDC has evolved into a network of 18 university-based centers and more than 90 outreach locations operating under the guidance of a State Director.
Since 1990, the SBDCs have helped Pennsylvania entrepreneurs start more than 22,000 new businesses and obtain $1.8 billion in start-up and expansion capital. More than 97,800 new jobs have been created.
Under the direction of Christopher Lynch, EMAP provides a step-by-step program to evaluate energy savings potential for small businesses. The services include an analysis of current energy usage, an on-site assessment of facilities, recommendations for cost savings and assistance in locating sources of financing for the upgrades. According to Lynch, energy efficiency is one of the easier and most cost-effective steps a business can take to prevent pollution and increase profitability.
“Payback periods are often very short and results can be substantial,” says Lynch. EMAP stresses that energy efficient upgrades most often make sense in the areas of lighting, HVAC equipment, office equipment, process equipment and motors and the building envelope.
EMAP also assists firms in the development of new energy and environmental technology. One-on-one consulting assistance is provided to help prepare and review proposals, find new commercial markets and opportunities, identify potential funding sources and to find potential project partners.