“Sustainability” is more than just a buzzword. It’s an intentional act, a strategic choice made by business owners to consider how their operations affect not only their bottom line, but their surrounding communities and our environment.
Though the payoff is massively rewarding, adopting and promoting sustainability is no small task. Amid the day-to-day responsibilities of running a successful company, business owners face a lot of important and complex decisions. From figuring out ways to reduce energy consumption to implementing eco-friendly waste management tactics and beyond, the journey toward greener business practices can feel overwhelming.
But what if business owners didn’t have to navigate this process on their own?
Enter Choose DuPage’s Green Business Assessment. Created in partnership with the Smart Energy Design Assistance Center (SEDAC), this initiative provides no-cost sustainability assessments for businesses across DuPage County, giving them the insights and guidance to make a lasting difference.
Keep reading to learn the critical role of this program, its impact on environmental responsibility and the value it offers businesses.
WHAT A GREEN BUSINESS IS & THE BENEFITS OF BECOMING ONE
Before we elaborate on the details of our Green Business Assessment, it’s important that we get on the same page about what it means to be a “green business” in the first place.
SEDAC identifies green businesses as companies that operate across six key areas of sustainability which minimize their environmental impact and maximize their growth potential.
- Waste Reduction: Minimizing waste isn’t just ecologically beneficial; it helps create tangible cost savings both now and in the future.
- Pollution Prevention: A steadfast commitment to pollution prevention directly contributes to a healthier environment and safer communities.
- Trimming Utility Usage and Costs: Smart energy practices directly translate into reduced utility bills, while also supporting broader energy conservation efforts.
- Engaging Employees in Sustainability Efforts: Involving staff in sustainability initiatives nurtures teamwork, camaraderie and shared responsibility.
- Promoting Healthy Workplaces: Sustainability practices extend to fostering healthier indoor environments, which, in turn, boost employee productivity and satisfaction.
- A Journey of Continuous Improvement: Green businesses are inherently committed to an ongoing journey of innovation and enhancement of their sustainable practices.
Let’s dive into the ins and outs of the Green Business Assessment and get a closer look at how it all works.
HOW THE PROCESS WORKS
The Green Business Assessment, a partnership between Choose DuPage and SEDAC, is your roadmap to align with green energy and enhance energy efficiency in DuPage County. Follow it to leverage green building incentives and create real change.
Here’s how it works.
1. GET ASSESSED:
We conduct a free sustainability assessment, delving into your operations and identifying opportunities for sustainability improvements.
This information-gathering phase is crucial. From the amount of greenhouse gases emitted by the businesses in your supply chain, to how long and how many lights you keep on throughout the workday, each data point helps us understand the bigger picture.
2. RECEIVE YOUR PLAN:
Next, we’ll create a unique green action plan that outlines your path to reducing costs, boosting operational efficiency and switching to renewable energy sources, if possible.
You’ll be able to connect with sustainability initiatives in DuPage County, such as the ComEd Distributed Generation (DG) Rebate. This program helps offset the out-of-pocket costs of solar panel installation, offering rebates of up to $300/kW. (For more information, please visit ComEd’s website.)
3. TAKE ACTION:
Whether it’s optimizing your industrial properties’ energy consumption or finding office space outfitted with the latest energy-efficient technology, we assist you in making sustainable, value-driven choices.
These decisions can help unlock exciting business opportunities and may even make the business relocation process easier.
4. RECEIVE INCENTIVES AND CERTIFICATION:
As you continue to complete the practices outlined in your plan—whether it’s playing an active role in integrating solar energy in DuPage County, lowering your Scope 3 emissions by localizing your supply chain, etc.—you’ll become eligible to receive financial incentives and sustainability certifications.
You can even become an official SEDAC/Illinois Green Business Association (IGBA) Green-Certified Business, showing your customers and the greater DuPage business community that your organization leads by example. You’ll also receive valuable exposure via a press release, social media coverage, a public map listing, county-wide Choose DuPage promotion, and state-wide recognition.
Interested in participating in our Green Business Assessment? We’re welcoming businesses of all sizes and types—from startups to established enterprises, nonprofits to public-sector organizations.
By embracing sustainability and taking advantage of our Green Business Assessment, you’re not only benefiting your company—you’re contributing to a greener future for DuPage County and beyond. Together, we can establish a thriving business ecosystem that embodies the DuPage Difference and sets an influential example of global environmental stewardship.
To participate or gather more information, please reach out to us at info@ChooseDuPage.com.