At Giroux Glass, our commitment to environmental improvement is genuine.
It reassures me to know that our company is doing its part to save energy. Beyond the usual recycling of glass and metals, and the use of a fleet of Smart Cars, Giroux Glass did something really special this year – we celebrated Earth Day by installing solar panels on the roof of our downtown Los Angeles office building. (Solar panels were previously installed on the roof of our San Bernardino facility, and are being researched for our Las Vegas office as well.)
We worked with Sunistics, a Santa Monica-based company, fueled by their own motivation to enable small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to become more economically and environmentally sustainable. Jamie Vodden, VP of Strategy and Communications for Sunistics, explains that their challenge is to enlighten SMBs to adopt this technology, which has been historically more readily accepted and implemented by larger corporations.
Beyond the benefits of improving our immediate environment, and making a stand against the use of fossil fuels, there are also substantial financial benefits to consider. The early stages of the process include analysis of current energy bills and dig into future energy cost savings. But there are also such monetary incentives as federal and state tax credits and financial rebates from local energy providers. At Giroux Glass in Los Angeles, the savings generated by the new system will be close to 20% of current utility costs, or about $200,000 in projected cost saving over the 25-year lifespan of the system.
What’s really cool to consider, at least for me, is the positive impact on the environment. Sunistics prepares a report they call the “Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator,” to drive home the point in terms of what specific benefits each system implemented will cause, based on prior energy use and future use projections.
Based on this calculator, we can now claim that in our LA office location alone, Giroux Glass is reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions equivalent to any one of the following:
- Annual greenhouse gas emissions from 67.1 passenger vehicles; or
- 758,506 miles/year driven by that average passenger vehicle; or
- 114 TONS of waste being sent to a landfill; or
- 35,847 gallons of gasoline consumed; or
- 43.8 homes’ electricity use for one year; or
- 8,333 incandescent light bulbs switched to CFLs; or
- 741 barrels of oil consumed; or
- 13,274 propane cylinders used for home barbeques.
These are easy for everyone to relate to – and represent amazing reductions of CO2 emissions. Consider what could be gained by more small or medium companies going this route.
It makes me proud to be a partner at Giroux when I see this commitment, although it’s not surprising. One of our core values is “Respect,” and in this case, (with my apologies to Aretha), “R-E-S-P-E-C-T” spells out respect for our environment and our future.
by Haik Khatchatrian, Director of Finance at Giroux Glass, Inc.