Many small businesses contact us, and ask what they can do to ‘green up’ their business. Community Greenhouse Foundation has developed a program to help you reduce electric and water usage, to encourage recycling and use of recycled materials, and to reduce the amount of solid waste your organization produces. And to launch their efforts, they announce the Greening America Business Challenge.
More than just green-washing, they’ve partnered with Energy Star (the US Department of Energy) and WasteWise (US Environmental Protection Agency) programs. Using nationally recognized third party tools and criteria, CGF helps you understand what your organization is doing, individually, and then prescribes a variety of efforts you can undertake to reduce your impact.
The Community Greenhouse Foundation has developed the Sustainable Green Business Certification program and standards, geared to small and medium business and tied to an organization’s current programs, practices and products along with their willingness to commit to incorporating programs, products and practices that can be quantified by third party assessment tools.
Utilizing federal resources and tools, the Foundation has developed the Sustainable Green Business Certification which utilizes accredited third party tools and resources to document how green a business is or can become.
Business incurs a dramatic impact on our natural resources. Our program provides ongoing support and guidance for companies to reach Sustainable Green Goals. Commitment and change from the corporate and small business world can make a major impact on the reduction of energy and water usage, solid waste, increase recycling and promote community education.
The “SGB” certification shows the public that the company has accepted the challenge to not only practice Green Sustainable practices in their business, but is taking a leadership role in the communities and regions in which they operate. One of the main criteria of the program is the on-going monitoring and commitment to reach attainable goals that can be measured each year.
Companies who take on the challenge benefit in many ways:
- Recognition and exposure on a national, regional and local level
- SGB designation shows their leadership toward Sustainable Green Issues
- Resources and programs available through the our strategic partnerships
- Assistance to access Federal and State programs and resources that may be available for companies ranging from special financing and tax incentive programs for improvements
- Ongoing available support to make their Company “Greener”
- Cost savings that result from instituting the SGB-customized Eco-Plan measures
- Reduced impact on local resources, water and energy
- Leading the way and making a difference – Being a part of the solution
The goals of the “SGB” Certification and Business Challenge
- 1. Provide a Non-Bias Certification for Business’ utilizing documented third party tools and resources.
- 2. Be able to demonstrate and quantify the impact these companies have collectively in reducing energy and environmental issues we face in our county.
- 3. Act as a facilitator and conduit for organizations to access resources to help them reach their Sustainable Green Goals.
- 4. Utilize the Leadership demonstrated by participating companies to educate communities.
SGB Certification Guidelines
The program is broken into 5 categories which are evaluated and accessed utilizing established third party tools and resources based on a company’s current practices and programs. Each category has an established point value of 20 points; a total of 70 points must be achieved by a company to receive SGB Certification.
Section I – General Current Company Status
Section II – Companies Current Operational Equipment Status
Section III – Companies Current material supply Usage
Section IV – Companies Current Water/Equipment Usage
Section V – Company Narrative
Companies submit a SGB Preliminary Enrollment form which is submitted and reviewed to determine the estimated cost to become certified. Certification cost is based on the size of the company. Factors that determine cost related to Certification include numbers of employees, size of the facility the company operates it business in and multiple locations that the company may utilize.
Companies must indicate at this time if they are applying just for Certification or both Certification and enrollment in the “Green Business Challenge”
Companies can choose not to enroll in the “Greening America Business Challenge” portion of the program and just submit Applications for Certification. Companies will not be penalized and will be evaluated on their current programs, practices and products/services they provide. These companies will not be eligible to receive a customized “SGB” EcoProgram and their Certification will expire after one year. Documentation verification and/or sites visits are required for all Companies to be Certified.
Taking the information companies provide in their application and assessment form, a Certification will be awarded or denied within two weeks after all required documentation has been received. Companies who receive the “SGB” Certification will be issued and sent the “SGB” Certification which they can display in the Business, rights to use the SGB logo in marketing including on their Company web sites and will be added to the list “SGB” Certified companies on the Foundations Web Site.
Companies who choose to enroll in the “Green Business Challenge” information is reviewed and a customized “SGB” EcoProgram is established for the business documenting potential savings and reductions related to environmental issues but also potential increase profits the company should realize if it accepts the program challenge.
When the company accepts and signs the customized Eco-program developed, it then receives the “SGB” Challenge Certificate/Participant which they can display in the Business and will be added to the list of participating companies. The “savings/reductions” that will result from that company will be added to the projected yearly totals resulting from all the companies as a whole. After one year if the company meets all the customized program goals outlined in their agreement their “SGB” certification will be Granted for a period three years.
Awards will be given on a yearly basis to companies that exceed their program goals.
Contact us for a detailed Program package including the Preliminary Enrollment Form
For more info, contact:
CEO, Community Greenhouse Foundation
Community Greenhouse Foundation is no longer in operation. We keep this article here because it has value and can help businesses in their quest to use less water and energy. This program was an early effort to out tools from Department of Energy and EPA in the hands of small business owners.
GreenBrevard was created under a partnership with CGF in 2004 and we like to keep their memory alive.