(SAVANNAH) – Corporate is going green because the opportunities make practical business sense, as the recent GreenBuild International Conference and Expo demonstrated.
 
Major corporations, from lighting to carpeting to paint and construction companies, had representatives at the event sharing information about environmentally friendly building techniques and products, said Anthony Wagner, a broker with Southeast Georgia commercial real estate firm Melaver-Mouchet. He attended the GreenBuild International Conference and Expo earlier this month in Chicago, known as the nation’s greenest city, where it was announced the Sears Tower will go “green” or in practical business terms – will be retrofitted for energy efficiency.
 
“It makes you realize this is not a fad, this is becoming big business,” Wagner said. He was surprised at the large turnout from corporations. “Everyone is realizing this is the way things are going to have to go or they’re going to be left behind. Construction is going to be required to be more sustainable.”
 
Buildings certified through the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program are beginning to achieve a premium when they sell or lease and are leasing or selling more quickly, Wagner said.
 
People tend to think green building is more expensive, but that’s no longer the case, Wagner said. “Companies are successfully finding ways to do it more economically, and then it’s going to be a no-brainer because of the money saved in lower energy costs,” Wagner said.
 
Many at the GreenBuild conference noted that as consumers learn more about the cost savings of green building, demand will increase and businesses already involved will benefit, which will improve their bottom line. Several clients have been happy to learn about money-saving, energy-efficient options, said Wagner, who is a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Accredited Professional. Some of the tenants make energy efficient choices such as fluorescent lights or fabric HVAC ductwork, and also save on water bills with low-flow plumbing fixtures.
 
“I can give options to tenants that they never knew about,” he said. “It’s nice to think you contribute to a tenant having a more cost-efficient building and offering them some savings. It’s a bonus I can provide to my prospective tenants.”
 
Wagner’s responsibilities include leasing retail space throughout the region as well as for one of Melaver’s flagship projects, Abercorn Common, the first all-retail LEED shopping center in the country.
 
Melaver -Mouchet is a leader in the commercial real estate market in Savannah and throughout Southeast Georgia and the Low Country.  The office is located in the historic Whitaker Building, the first building in Savannah to become LEED certified; it is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
 
Contact: (912) 238-5416
www.melavermouchet.com
 
For more information  about next year’s GreenBuild International Conference and Expo, visit
http://www.greenbuildexpo.org/
 

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