by ANNA RABHAN
Starting on March 20, Jacksonville businesses have the opportunity to learn how to improve their bottom line and heighten their sustainability profile—all for free! The U.S. Green Building Council North Florida has partnered with the City of Jacksonville to present its greenWORKs initiative. Participating businesses will then be recognized and sustainability leaders awarded at the chapter’s annual gala.
The U.S. Green Building Council North Florida (www.usgbcnf.org) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit striving for a sustainable region and green buildings for all in North Florida within this generation through open collaboration, education and leadership. If you’ve ever heard a business like a hotel or an organization like a school describe their facility as “LEED-certified,” the USGBC NF are the folks who guided them through the process of earning their Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification. The University of North Florida, the City of Jacksonville Animal Care and Protective Services and Aloft Hotel are just a few of those the USGBC NF has helped.
Now this organization seeks to do even more good for our city and region by helping area businesses reduce their energy consumption. The greenWORKs initiative is a series of three free workshops on commercial building energy reduction and money savings designed to help businesses improve their bottom line through the financial benefits of energy use reduction as well as improve their environmental sustainability. USGBC NF Executive Director Sarah Boren says, “Our ultimate goal is for Jacksonville to become one of the ‘Greenest Cities in America.'”
The March 20 workshop covered reducing demand for energy and water within a building. The April 25 workshop will teach participants how to analyze their building’s energy performance with auditing tools. The May 20 workshop will bring everything together with information on commissioning buildings, implementing strategies, and measurement and verification. All workshops take place at Everbank Center Auditorium from 4-6 pm. Register through the chapter’s events calendar at www.usgbcnf.org/event-calendar.
On May 23 from 5-8 pm, the USGBC NF will recognize businesses that participated in the greenWORKs initiative, as well as present awards to Jacksonville’s sustainability leaders, at its annual awards gala at UNF’s The Boathouse, a LEED Gold-certified facility. Last year’s nominees included Green Hero Award winner Amanda Searle of Sustainable Springfield, a nonprofit community organization focusing on sustainable food systems; Breaking Ground Contracting, Green Business of the Year; and Interior Design + Construction award winner Gresham Smith & Partners.
So, businesses, register for the USGBC NF’s greenWORKs initiative workshops and help Jacksonville become one of the “Greenest Cities in America”!
greenWORKS helps business with sustainability
by ANNA RABHAN