Page archived as of December 31, 2013

Green Building Resource Center - Business

By making green building a priority, businesses can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, enhance company image, and achieve energy savings that improve their bottom line. The Green Building Resource Center (GBRC) offers guidance on how to source renewable energy, technical support on how to identify the most cost-effective energy improvements, and tips for how to make everyday operations more sustainable. 

Nexus Between Climate Change and Green Buildings

Local Energy Auditors Commercial 

Top 10 Do-It Yourself Energy Audit Procedures

Building Owners

Building Owners

  • Solar Power Options for Your Business
    With the rising cost of fuel and dwindling natural resources, more and more people are turning to solar power, providing their homes and businesses with clean, renewable energy. Solar power generates zero CO2 emissions while reducing the U.S. demand for foreign oil.
  • Energy Audits: A smart way to determine the best green improvements for your buck
    An energy audit is often the first step to making a home or building more efficient.  During an energy audit (also called an energy assessment), a trained professional will evaluate the existing structure to determine how energy is being used in a building. 
  • Green Rating Systems: LEED, Green Globes, and Energy Star
    Those buildings that attempt to reduce their energy consumption and environmental impact are often referred to as "green buildings". Green building certification programs not only recognize a building's sustainable initiatives, it also provides guidance to further improve the indoor air quality, encourage regional and sustainable material selection, and reduce water and energy consumption.
  • Stormwater Management and the Chesapeake Bay
    Preserving the Chesapeake Bay affects even those of us living near the top of the Bay watershed as the eco-systems are intrinsically linked through our rivers and precipitation.
  • CFLs: Busting Common Myths
    According to ENERGY STAR, CFLs use about 75% less energy than a standard incandescent bulb that puts out the same amount of light. Not only do they use less electricity, but CFLs last for years and years - up to 10 times longer than an incandescent bulb. In the past, CFLs have received some bad press. This article aims bust some myths that have been lingering as a result of misperceptions and old information. 
  • Financing Energy Efficiency Improvements: Incentives for Businesses 
  • How to Buy Green Power
    Purchasing green power, or electricity produced from renewable sources such as solar, wind, and biogas, is an excellent way to support the renewable energy industry without making any physical changes to your building. If your business supports renewable energy but doesn't have the means or infrastructure for on-site solar panels or wind turbines, green power offers an alternative.
  • Top Ten Things You Can Do to "Green" Your Small Business



  • Local Green Building Training and Certification Programs for Contractors
    Due to the number of green buildings in the Washington, DC metropolitan area, in addition to local mandates and resolutions that encourage sustainable practices in construction, local contractors in Alexandria have a variety of green building certification and training opportunities available to them.
  • Green Roofs in Alexandria: What They Are and Where to Find Them
    A green roof is a roof that is covered in vegetation rather than traditional roofing materials such as tile or shingles. They are often incorporated as part of a green building design plan because they offer a number of environmental, as well as aesthetic and financial, benefits.
  • Passive Solar Design: Heating and Cooling Using Sunlight
    Heat and light from the sun is free, renewable and easily accessible. Why not use it to light, heat, and cool your building? Passive solar design uses simple design elements such as building orientation, windows, shading, insulation, and thermal mass to strategically harness the sun's energy to heat and cool a building.
  • Choosing Sustainable Flooring
    When we think about sustainability and going green in our homes, one of the biggest opportunities is right under our feet. That's right, the floor. Floors get some the highest daily usage of anything in our homes, so how can we make sure it's safe for the environment and sustainable for years to come?
  • Geothermal Heating and Cooling
    Ground-source heat pumps have earned generous amounts of praise and attention recently, but what sets it apart from other heating and cooling systems?

Business Operations


  • Cold Hard Facts: Chargers Waste Energy
    Did you ever notice that the plug for your cell-phone charger is warm?  That is because it is drawing electricity, even when it's not charging your phone. 
  • Occupancy/Vacancy Sensor - Make the Switch Automatic
    How often have you forgotten to turn off the light switch when leaving a room or opened the storage closet to see the light bulb still glowing?  Although this happens all the time, simply forgetting to switch the lights off contributes to a costly electricity bill.  The quick and easy solution lies with installing occupancy/vacancy sensors which offer huge energy savings with minimal effort. 
  • Laptop vs. Desktop
    Choosing a laptop over a desktop computer means an energy savings of 50 – 80%.  These savings can really add up for your business - especially if more people in the office follow your example and select a laptop computer instead of a desktop.

big fan small image version