The resources available through the federal government for going green are mainly available through the Environmental Protection Agency and the Small Business Administration. Some resources are also available through the Department of Energy.
The EPA has developed a program that awards an ENERGY STAR to businesses that have demonstrated excellence in energy efficiency. The ENERGY STAR Challenge is an effort to get businesses to improve the energy efficiency of America's commercial and industrial buildings by 10 percent or more. Among the steps that businesses can take to earn an ENERGY STAR are the following:
- Design commercial buildings to be energy efficient
- Measure and track energy use
- Develop a plan for energy improvements
- Make energy efficiency upgrades
Because ENERGY STAR focuses on improving the energy efficiency of buildings, it tends, understandably, to be geared more to larger rather than smaller businesses. The EPA, however, to its credit, has programs and resources designed specifically for small businesses. Even if you own a home-based small business, you can still, using the list above, measure and track energy use, develop a plan for energy improvements, and make energy efficiency upgrades.
Other Government Resources
For more information on resources available through the federal government, take a look at any of the following: