In recent years, there has been a large push for owners of business and commercial spaces to recognize and reduce their environmental impacts. Because the demand for eco-conscious companies likely isn’t going anywhere, it’s important to consider how you can put your best non-carbon footprint forward.
Maybe you’re building a brand-new commercial space, or maybe you’re considering retrofitting your established business with tech to reduce unnecessary waste. Either way, making your building eco-friendlier is one of the best things you can do, both for the environment and for your company’s success. Whether you’re doing a complete green remodel or just looking to make a positive change when the budget allows, here are some of the best ways to keep eco-conscious design in mind for your commercial building.
Eco-Friendly Building Materials
Eco-friendly building materials come from renewable sources, allowing them to be harvested with minimal impact to the environment. They also typically use fewer chemicals and less energy in their production.
Reclaimed wood can be repurposed to create a rustic, natural feel without harvesting new wood. It’s great for flooring, splash walls, and exposed beams.
Bamboo grows extremely fast, so it can be harvested and quickly reforested. Its durability makes it a popular choice for flooring and walls, as well as decorative elements.
Recycled steel is lightweight, durable, and a huge energy saver when it comes to production. A single ton of recycled steel saves a ½ ton of coal, 1½ tons of iron ore, and gallons of water.
There are several more sustainable alternatives to traditional fiberglass insulation, though many have a higher cost that will need to be factored into your budget. For example, the compressed fibers of sheep’s wool insulation forms millions of tiny air pockets to help maintain the ideal temperature in all seasons. The material’s inner layer absorbs moisture, while the outer layer resists it. Use sheep’s wool, and you’ll likely save on energy costs, as you won’t be fiddling with the thermostat as often.
There are plenty of other options for sustainable insulation, including:
- Cotton insulation: often made from recycled denim
- Icynene insulation: spray foam made from castor oil
- Cellulose insulation: made from recycled paper
When it comes to renewable energy for commercial spaces, the benefits are endless, even if you’re using a small solar panel system to supplement your larger electrical grid. Solar energy offers a great return on investment. It will take a few years, but your energy savings will eventually pay off the price of your solar panels. You also won’t need to worry about the fluctuations in energy prices with solar panels, meaning your electrical overhead will remain steady.
Building or retrofitting your commercial building isn’t just good for the environment. By using eco-friendly building practices, you can set your business apart from competitors as an option for consumers who care about the planet. Going green also increases the value of your commercial building in the event you sell, and it decreases your energy operating costs overall.
Whether you’re interested in making some eco-friendly alterations to your commercial space or starting a new project with environmental impact in mind, BCI Construction can help. We recognize the importance of preserving the planet for future generations, and with expert knowledge on green building practices, our team is ready to help you get started.