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The Why and How of Sustainable Facility Management

Jul 05, 2022 / Facility management

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What is sustainability? According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, “To pursue sustainability is to create and maintain the conditions under which humans and nature can exist in productive harmony to support present and future generations.” 

Sustainability also improves the quality of our lives and preserves natural resources for future generations. We are at a point in our world in which sustainability has become critical. As a facility manager or business owner, you are in a unique position to implement sustainable facility management in your space to minimize negative effects on the environment. In addition to reducing your facility’s carbon footprint:

1. Sustainability brings in revenue

85% of the global population indicates they have shifted towards purchasing more sustainable products and services over the last five years. One-third of millennials will choose a sustainable alternative when it’s available, according to the Global Sustainability Study 2021 conducted by Simon-Kucher Partners. 

2. Green buildings are less expensive to operate 

Green buildings cost 14% less to operate than traditional buildings, according to the World Green Building Trends 2016 Smart Market Report. 

3. Green buildings are more valuable 

On average, green buildings are worth 7% more than traditional buildings, with market demand for green buildings doubling every three years.  

So now that you have an idea of why it’s an excellent idea to practice sustainable facilities management, you’ll want to begin by setting goals that reflect your company’s values.  Ensure they fit into what is known as the SMART framework: specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. After that, here are some easy ways to get started! 

4. Install smart pumps 

Pumps have many functions – they heat, cool, treat, and distribute water and generate power. Since pumps often account for 40% of industrial energy usage, they can make a big difference when it comes to achieving goals for your sustainable facility management plan. Traditional pumps rely on valves opening and closing to vary the flow while the pump remains at the maximum speed, but smart pumps can reduce speed to meet demand. Smart pumps use Variable Frequency Drives (VFDs), sensors, and embedded devices that communicate with the internet to send and receive data. The result can be 50% or more in energy savings!

5. Switch to renewable energy 

Every commercial or residential building needs electricity to operate, however, none need to depend entirely on the grid. When you transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources by updating infrastructure – such as installing affordable solar panels — you can reduce your company’s CO2 emissions and energy costs. Solar energy is green and cost-effective and you may even be able to collect enough energy to sell some back to the provider for a profit. 

6. Reduce heating and cooling costs 

One of the easiest ways to do this? Simply turn off the heater or air conditioner when workers are not in the building. With this one easy sustainable facilities management action, you can lower your overall energy consumption by 10%. 

7. Replace your HVAC system

Chiller boiler HVAC systems, which use water instead of air to heat and cool are more efficient because they provide even temperatures by employing radiant heat. They are both easy to install and can be attached to the building’s water supply. 

8. Schedule regular HVAC maintenance

Want to make your existing HVAC system more efficient? When you schedule regular maintenance with an HVAC professional, they can identify clogged filters, dirty ducts and coils, dusty vents, and worn-out parts that are causing your entire system to work harder. 

9. Teach tenants to turn off electronics

Train your employees and tenants to shut off lights and equipment when they are not using them to reduce extraneous energy usage and fulfill your sustainable facilities management plan.

10. Switch to LED lights 

LEDs are just as bright as traditional bulbs but use 90% less energy! They also last 15 times longer, which means you can expect major savings on operations and maintenance.  

11. Use eco-friendly cleaning products 

Green cleaning products don’t contain chemicals that cause significant air or water pollution, help fight ozone depletion and climate change, and are often found in recyclable or recyclable packages. 

Exceptional professional cleaning services for commercial spaces 

As a responsible facility manager or building owner, you want your tenants to have a safe, and pristine place to work. Hiring a skilled commercial office cleaning services company such as Southwest Cleaning Services is one way to ensure you are doing everything possible to maintain a pleasant work environment and keep germs at bay. For more than 21 years, Southwest Cleaning Services has been the premier commercial cleaner and the best of all the medical cleaning companies to serve the South Plains area including Lubbock, Amarillo, Brownfield, Slaton, Post, Levelland, Plainview, Littlefield, and Lamesa. 

Our services include:

Disinfecting cleaning services

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Want to learn more about us? Read some reviews from our ecstatic customers!   

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Ready to get started? Contact us for a quote!

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Your business is unique. Therefore, you deserve an office cleaning program tailored to fit your specific needs. Since 1991 Southwest Cleaning has provided the highest quality Lubbock commercial cleaning and Lubbock janitorial services.
 

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