Businesses Can Reduce Their Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Business owners can make climate smart choices and achieve cost savings.
The Ulster County Climate Smart Committee, supported by the Ulster County Department of the Environment and the Office of Economic Development, has launched the 2018 Green Business Challenge Campaign.
The purpose of the challenge is to help Ulster County businesses, organizations and municipalities reduce greenhouse gas emissions, mitigate climate change, and, in most cases, reap considerable savings doing so. The program also wants to support local green building contractors, renewable energy providers and other businesses that implement sustainability practices.
Here are some actions suggested by the Green Business Challenge that business owners can take to become an Ulster County Green Business Leader:
- Energy audit. Undertaking an energy audit is usually the first step because that will help Green Business Challenge participants to understand and prioritize the most effective actions to take. The audit must be followed by one or more of the following actions:
- Energy retrofit. Undertake an energy retrofit, which can include: air-sealing and insulation; installing ground-source (geothermal) or air-source heat pump for heating and cooling; switching to LED lighting: interior, exterior or municipal street lighting
- Install a solar array or other renewable energy system to generate your own power. Wind or small, low-impact hydroelectric would also qualify.
- Purchase 100% renewable energy from a local source such as a community solar project. Central Hudson also allows you to choose your energy provider. You can choose a provider who generates all or some of its electricity from renewable sources, at rates lower than what Central Hudson charges. Learn More.
- Purchase an electric vehicle or install one or more electric vehicle charging stations. Switching to EVs is a great way to lower your fleet operating costs. And your fleet will emit about one third the greenhouse gasses of a gasoline or diesel powered fleet, even less if combined with renewable energy generation.
You can earn a $7,500 federal tax credit, and a $2,000 New York State tax rebate.
Adding a charging station for electric vehicles is a great way to attract customers to your business, and NY State can pay most of the costs.
- Food waste reuse or composting. Restaurants and other food waste generators implement food waste reuse with Food Bank of the Hudson Valley and/or composting via local haulers who will take it to the Ulster County Resource and Recovery Agency (UCRRA) or other composting facilities.
- Significantly reduce single-use plastic. Items such a plastic drinking staws are discarded by Americans 500 million times a day. Consider using paper straws instead.
- Other actions that reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, or otherwise addresses the climate crisis are welcome.
For more information, please contact the campaign organizers at this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
or, call the Ulster County Department of the Environment at (845) 340-4298.