New Milestone: 1,000 Businesses Use ICLEI's Green Business Challenge Web Appby Don Knapp
More good news on ICLEI’s Green Business Challenge program: One thousand businesses across the country have now used our Green Business Challenge Web App to accelerate their environmental performance, saving incredible amounts of energy, money, water, and waste.
Local Governments Help Businesses Win
The Challenge is the nation’s most exciting and innovative green business program. This fun and friendly competition between local businesses rewards those who make the biggest gains in environmental performance over the course of a year. The Challenge is one of the most successful and cost-effective ways that any local government can help its local businesses go green—and make progress toward community-wide climate and energy goals.
ICLEI’s Web App is the centerpiece of any successful Challenge program—from Chicago and Houston to Bellevue and San Diego—and 1,000 users shows that this is a proven tool.
ICLEI’s Web App allows any local government to launch a Green Business Challenge program in weeks, not months, and to administer it with fewer staff and less money. Participants access the Web App through the local government’s website, and use it to register, take a baseline survey, browse a library of tips and resources, update their achievements, view a scorecard that tracks their progress toward goals, read customized suggestions for ways to increase their score, and operate a carbon calculator.
Incredible Results in Chicago and Houston
The Web App is the centerpiece of Challenge programs in Chicago, IL, Houston, TX, Bellevue, WA, and Port of San Diego, CA:
- In 2011, Chicago commercial property managers and businesses used the Web App to engage in the Chicago Green Office Challenge and saved a collective $17.5 million in energy costs, reduced energy use by 124 million kilowatt hours, kept more than 85,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, and diverted 43% of their waste from landfills.
- In 2011 the businesses participating in the Houston Green Office Challenge reduced energy use by 28 million kilowatt hours, water use by 74 million gallons, and diverted 40% of their waste from landfills.
- View more success stories here.
Expanding Across the Country
The Challenge—pioneered by ICLEI and City of Chicago—is rapidly being replicated and launched by local governments across the country. Seven additional communities—including Arlington County, VA, Austin, TX, and Charleston, SC—have run Challenge programs in their communities with great success (learn more here), and more programs are in development.
“The Green Business Challenge is one of the most successful and cost-effective ways that a city or county can help businesses go green and make progress toward community-wide energy and climate goals,” said Michael Schmitz, ICLEI USA Executive Director. “The fact that 1,000 businesses have now used ICLEI’s Web App shows that this is a proven and indispensable engagement tool. It also makes launching a Challenge program far easier for local governments with limited staff time and money.”