Monday, February 9, 2009

On the Cheap: Green Building Edition

The Wall Street Journal has a great bit in their business section today about how to go green in hard financial right now. The article focuses on improvements that have relatively quick payback and will save money on energy bills over time - the kind of stuff you want to do anyway in the name of good building/home maintenance.

This is exactly the kind of thing Rick Mock, head of facilities for One and Two Union Square, talked about when I interviewed him about the Union Square campus' effort to make LEED certification. I'll give you a heads up when it gets posted on WorldChanging.

The cool thing about both these articles is the emphasis on the affordability and the smart financial sense of green improvements. If you have a bunch of money for capital investment, make big money improvements and replace expensive equipment; if you don't, go for the low-hanging fruit. Focus on what will get you rebates or save you money in the long run so the improvements will pay for themselves (this works out really well for energy efficiency improvements). This is light years ahead of the school of thought that says when times are tough, green is the first thing to go.

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