17,000 Members

WHAT'S IN IT FOR GREEN BUSINESSES AND ORGANIZATIONS?

There are plenty of reasons to have a green company including increased employee morale to more confident, loyal customers. Not to mention, it's easy. You make mandatory commitments to be environmentally friendly in five categories—then pick a few additional ones that fit your business.

What are some simple things your business can do to be more green? Think about what you can do to reduce, reuse, or recycle; conserve and protect water and conserve energy. Encourage your employees to think about alternative transportation to get to the office.  The little things make a big difference to the environment. Take a look at the commitments for more ideas then pledge to green your business!

Perks of Being a GreenSpot

Buildings Perks
  • GreenSpot decal for your business.
  • GreenSpot logo for your business website.
  • Ability to use the GreenSpot sustainability framework for green options.

 

  • Your company listed on the GreenSpot website.
  • Eligible to receive a GreenSpotLight Award.
  • Cost savings from conserving resources.
  • A chance to be highlighted on the GreenSpot website and Facebook page.
  • Demonstrates environmental commitment on client proposals and reports.
  • Use of the MyGreenSpot logging and tracking tool to document your progress.
  • Networking with like-minded businesses and clients.

Commitment 1: Inform and Engage

Tip: Create and display an environment policy or mission statement.

Why? It shows customers you're committed to improving their communities. And, it's easy! Check out these examples and the City of Columbus' environmental policy.



Tip: Measure your compliance with local, federal, health, safety, and environmental regulations.

Why? Find a list of regulations by visiting the national and Ohio chapters of the Environmental Protection Agency.



Tip: In January of each year submit your green initiatives you've begun.

How? Use your MyGreenSpot dashboard to submit your green successes.



Optional Commitments:

  • Set aside time at each staff meeting to talk about your green efforts.
  • Track and post utility bills in a common employee space.
  • Openly encourage employees to be responsible environmental stewards in their personal lives.
  • Keep employees informed about your green efforts by including updates in newsletters and bulletins.
  • Post a list of the requirements for becoming a GreenSpot business where both customers and employees can see it.
  • We will openly encourage employees to become GreenSpot at home.
  • We will challenge a neighboring business to become a GreenSpot by referring them to the GreenSpot website.

 

Commitment 2: Reduce, Recycle & Reuse

Tip: Perform a waste audit of your business.

How? Learn how to perform a waste audit at Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio.



Tip: Track your monthly waste.

How? Use this handy waste tracking tool from swaco.org



Tip: Establish a business-wide recycling program that includes—at a minimum—glass, aluminum, plastic bottles, steel, and paper.

How? Visit swaco.org to get information about your local recycling subscription program.



Tip: Buy supplies made with recycled materials.

How? Stock at least 5 new or existing recycled-content products.



Optional Commitments:

  • When creating mailings, design them so they don't require an envelope.
  • E-mail or post staff memos and schedules in a central place instead of printing copies for each employee.
  • Communicate electronically—instead of on paper—whenever possible.
  • Buy products in returnable, reusable, or recyclable containers.
  • Purchase or obtain used office furniture.
  • We will provide our customers with an online payment option.
  • We will buy customer recognition and/or promotional gifts that are made with recycled and/or recyclable materials.

 

Commitment 3: Conserve Water

Tip: Fully comply with the City's Fats, Oils, and Grease Regulation.

How? Visit the City's website for details about the Fats, Oils, and Grease Regulation.



Tip: If applicable, fully comply with City's Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasure Plan requirements.

How? Visit the City's website for details about the Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasure Plan.



Tip: Check for leaks by performing a water audit—if you have more than 100 employees—or by closely reviewing your water bills—if you have fewer than 100 employees.

How? Follow this 8-step process to perform a water audit of your business. And learn more about the impact of leaks on water waste.




Optional Commitments:

  • Replace toilets that use 3 or more gallons of water per flush with ones that use 1.6 gallons or less per flush.
  • Replace urinals with water-free urinals, or ones that use 1 gallon of water or less per flush.
  • Install a water-efficient (1.6 or 2.2 gallons/minute) pre-rinse spray nozzle in your kitchen for washing dishes.
  • Install automatic faucets on all sinks.
  • Run your dishwashers only when they are full, and post a sign to remind employees to abide by this commitment.
  • Keep receiving areas and dumpsters clear of litter by periodically sweeping the area, and ensuring each waste receptacle has a tight-fitting lid.
  • Not hose off or wash cars, equipment, floor mats, or other items where runoff flows into the storm drain.
  • Provide an outdoor receptacle for cigarette butt disposal or have a tobacco free campus.
  • Remove hardscape and install permeable paving, such as porous concrete or porous pavers.

 

Commitment 4: Conserve Energy

Tip: Perform an energy audit, or use EnergyStar's Portfolio to track your energy use.

How? Log on to EnergyStar to get started.



Optional Commitments:

  • Convert to energy-efficient light bulbs, such as compact fluorescent lights (CFLs), and/or upgrade existing fluorescent tube lighting with T-8 or T-5 lamps with electronic ballasts. Begin with five light fixtures—or 10% of your lights (whichever is greater)—and commit to changing the rest in the next two years.
  • Replace all Exit signs with LED or high-efficiency alternatives.
  • Perform regular maintenance on your HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) and refrigeration systems—or ask your landlord to do so.
  • Apply window film to reduce solar heat gain, or shade sun-exposed windows and walls during the warm season by using awnings, sunscreens, shade trees or shrubbery.
  • Implement a facility-wide policy of turning off equipment and lights when not in use.
  • Install programmable thermostats, setting them to 68 degrees in winter (55 degrees at night) and 78 degrees in summer.

 

Commitment 5: Streamline Transportation

Tip: Encourage all employees to commitment to commute to work twice a month using an alternative form of transportation (not a single-occupancy vehicle).

Why? If the average person biked to work once every two weeks instead of driving, we could prevent close to one billion gallons of gasoline from entering the atmososphere.



Tip: Install a bike rack in your facility, or provide employees with another secure location to store bikes.

Why? More than 2 percent of all motor vehicle trips Americans take are less than one-mile long.



Tip: If applicable, make your fleet more efficient by achieving at least a one-star rating with the Ohio Green Fleet Program.

How? Learn more about the Ohio Green Fleet Program.



Optional Commitments:

  • Install a bike rack for customers in or near your facility—in a highly visible, sheltered location.
  • Provide employees with information about ridesharing and bus transportation on a bulletin board or in newsletters.
  • Encourage employees to walk or bike to meetings, lunch, etc.
  • Provide employees with COTA, CoGo Bike Share, and Car2Go information.
  • Provide bikes for employees to use during the day.

 

Ready to Get Green?

For more options, preview the application and Become A GreenSpot.