Making Renewable Energy Affordable for Small Businesses
The media highlights multinational corporations’ sustainability efforts, painting them as the leaders of the eco-conscious movement. Unfortunately, displaced media attention leaves eco-friendly small business measures in the dark. Small companies generate significantly less pollution than their larger competitors.
Employees of non-corporate companies have a say when it comes to energy sourcing, recycling and production processes. Small businesses also have greater access to clean energy adoption. Installing green technology in one office is easier than conducting national installations.
The one limitation to small businesses’ renewable power purchases is upfront system costs. Solar systems, wind turbines and geothermal heating pumps are expensive, and many companies lack funding for clean energy. Fortunately, the U.S. government is working on increasing the cost-effectiveness of renewable energy systems.
The Importance of a Company’s Sustainability
The current consumer market is generating sustainable demands. Nearly 62% of Generation Z and 54% of Millennial customers prefer eco-conscious products over environmentally degrading options. Therefore, adopting sustainability is essential for small businesses to remain competitive in their industry.
Utilizing renewable energy sources also helps small companies save money. For example, clean power devices can eliminate a building’s electricity costs, increasing their yearly savings. Businesses can also receive tax incentives for purchasing and installing energy efficiency devices.
Renewable energy systems additionally provide a passive income for business owners. They can sell excess clean power to the state each month for a profit. The systems may also significantly shrink a company’s carbon footprint.
Most businesses source their production energy from fossil fuel-derived electricity. In combustion, the elements contribute to the enhanced greenhouse effect. It interferes with the Earth’s natural temperature control process.
The atmosphere naturally converts solar radiation into heat, warming Earth’s surface and sending excess energy to space. Greenhouse gases have a higher sunlight-to-heat conversion rate, overproducing warmth. They also contain heat in the atmosphere rather than emitting it back to space, raising the global temperature over time.
Fortunately, businesses can reduce their enhanced greenhouse effect contribution when using renewable energy sources. Nationally, we are increasing the cost-effectiveness of green technology, helping small companies access their benefits.
Increasing Clean Energy Affordability
President Biden initiated the Build Back Better policy upon entering office. The goal is to reach carbon neutrality by expanding the clean energy sector. He allocated two trillion dollars to the industry, advancing technology and raising sustainable employment rates.
The government used the funding, extending the renewable energy production tax credit (PTC). The PTC reaches 60% for all wind power development conducted before January. As a result, small businesses can invest in wind energy this year for a limited time at an affordable price, gaining 20% more than previous incentives.
Geothermal heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems also attained an extended tax incentive. The government extended the credit through 2024, starting at 26% and decreasing to 22% over time.
The systems additionally have a 100% efficiency rate. They may eliminate a small business’s HVAC utility costs and increase their potential savings. Adding solar panels can further reduce a company’s utility bill.
The Build Back Better funding also extended the solar industry’s tax credit. It lengthened the investment tax credit (ITC) through 2024, degrading to 22% after 2022. As a result, companies can utilize the current incentive, maximizing their solar system savings.
Return on Renewable Investments
When small businesses utilize extended tax credits and access affordable renewable energy systems, they experience a high return on their investments. In addition, sustainably focused companies with green technology attract and retain top employee talent. Like eco-consumerism, employees prefer working for a purpose-driven brand rather than an ecologically harmful company.
They also improve their brand image, increasing their community support. When small businesses invest in clean energy, they display their commitment to local health protection. Carbon emissions cause adverse lung health effects.
They also contribute to climate change, further decreasing localized air quality. Rising temperatures generate ground-level ozone, damaging lung tissue and inflaming the airways. Environmental effects also increase allergies and increase asthma irritants.
Adopting renewable energy devices increases public relations support. Companies that invest in green technology can be sustainable leaders in their industry. Attaining an eco-friendly reputation is essential to brand loyalty.
If you are looking to incorporate sustainability into your workplace or lifestyle, you may invest in clean energy. Smaller renewable energy systems are cost-effective, like portable solar chargers and generators. Researching your carbon footprint can also help individuals improve their environmental protection while increasing energy efficiency.
Author Bio: Jane works as the founder and editor-in-chief of Environment.co where she covers environmental news and sustainable living tips.