There is a tendency among many co-op boards, building managers and developers to consider “green” building technologies as extras—or as luxuries that have nothing to do with their need to reduce costs.
That kind of thinking is so yesterday! The fact is that it is possible right now to retrofit exiting buildings with eco-friendly heating and lighting systems that cut costs while enhancing residents’ environmental health and safety.
Community Environmental Center (CEC) is the largest not-for-profit energy conservation contractor in New York State (www.cecenter.org). As part of our experience shows from working on hundreds of buildings, there can be a quick payback and long-term savings for buildings of every size and shape.
As has been said, there are many shades of green. A building can start to “go green” simply by changing maintenance procedures—such as using benign cleaning products—or by a major capital improvement, such as installing a condensing boiler.
Doing something like replacing a boiler is a substantial investment, but proactive approaches to energy conservation pay for themselves over the years by reducing energy consumption and the impact of whipsawing fuel prices. At the same time, emissions of greenhouse gases and pollutants like particulates and nitrous oxides will be significantly reduced.