Save energy, save money, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Don’t miss out on these benefits of efficiency, no matter how much space you lease.
Track your energy use and share your data
EPA found that organizations that regularly measure and track their energy performance achieve greater energy savings than organizations that don’t. If you have sub-meters installed but don’t track energy use in your leased space, there’s a good chance you’re missing opportunities to save both energy and money.
EPA’s ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager can help; it’s an easy-to-use online tool for tracking your energy use and verifying improvements. Here are a few resources to get you started:
Be sure to talk to your landlord about energy benchmarking. Sharing the energy data for your space could help the building achieve or maintain ENERGY STAR certification.
If your space does not have sub-meters, consider installing them so you can learn how much energy your lighting, computers, and other equipment is using, and measure improvements.
Use energy wisely
Whatever your business objectives – meeting clients or customers’ needs, increasing sales, helping patients, or other priorities – there are simple improvements you can make to improve your energy performance. Start with a review of your existing equipment and lighting, and evaluate the benefits and costs of upgrading to more efficient options. Some of the actions that often lead to a good return on investment are:
- Upgrade to LED lighting.
- Purchase ENERGY STAR certified office equipment and appliances.
- Ensure all air vents are unobstructed by office materials or equipment. Blocked ventilation openings put an unnecessary strain on the HVAC equipment and can lead to an uncomfortable work environment.
- Take measures to reduce the plug load throughout your space; appliances, fans, coffee makers, and other plug-in equipment can account for 30 percent of your total energy use. The Plug Load Best Practices Guide (PDF, 2.4MB) suggests a number of low- or no-cost solutions.
- Putting your computers to sleep when they’re not active can save up to $50 per computer every year! EPA’s ENERGY STAR Low Carbon IT Campaign can help you institute a computer power management policy.
- Make an arrangement with your janitorial staff to implement a daytime cleaning schedule. This will eliminate the need to light and cool/heat your office space during overnight hours.
Engage your landlord
Landlords are often eager to collaborate on projects that will make the building as a whole more efficient and valuable, and increase the chances that a good tenant will renew its lease. You may even find that the landlord already has an energy and sustainability program to support your initiatives.
Reaching out to the property management team is usually a good place to start.
Read real-life examples
- Learn how the JLL management team at the Aon Center in Chicago created a sustainability committee in partnership with their tenants.
- Learn how Bridgepoint education collaborated with its landlord, Kilroy Realty, to install high efficiency equipment, saving almost $40,000 per year with less than a two-year payback.