LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It is a certification used to authenticate true eco-friendly buildings. Over the years, companies have undertaken the process to become LEED certified, while others are still hesitant. The costs involved are prohibitive for some, in part due to potential interruptions in production. Fortunately, the benefits of certification live on long after those initial cost issues.
LEED programs focus on the building itself, as opposed to the function of the facility. However, the care placed in obtaining LEED certification ultimately translates into greener production. This occurs as a byproduct of the system. People looking to build or retrofit a building in order to obtain LEED certification have to do certain things specified by the U.S. Green Building Council.
Points are awarded for each item that promotes environmental health. Something as minor as installing a bike rack can earn the company points. A recycling system in place of your traditional refuse system encourages employees to practice recycling and earns LEED points as well. In making the building healthier for the environment, companies actively involve their staff.
Improving Your Workplace
Other benefits to the workforce include air systems that do not recycle stale, dust-ridden air from the old factory ductwork, thus providing the workforce with cleaner air. Spaces that offer more natural lighting and less of a cubical-like environment promote higher staff morale and mental well-being. Recycling systems and other shared tasks that are formed from LEED programs also foster team-building.
Savings on Utilities
The savings from solar powered lighting, natural, energy-saving lighting, alternative energy systems and others definitely cut the monthly utility bill. While costs are extensive in the beginning, the savings are obvious and the money is recouped over time. Company use of timers or auto water shut-offs on faucets and low flow toilets are also energy savers that offer LEED points.
You don’t need to be planning a new factory, you can always seek certification for your existing facilities. Companies looking into LEED certification should take the next step and contact the U.S. Green Building Council for more information.