The Greening of the Workplace?
May 1st, 2007

As today’s Gotham Gazette points out, it is widely accepted that so-called green building techniques — energy efficient lights and appliances, white roofs, better ventilation and more — can save oil and water. But now some proponents say that environmentally friendly office buildings can improve worker productivity — and the data, and common sense, back them up.

“Researchers and others have projected that tens of billions of dollars could be saved annually from reduced absenteeism and improved employee performance if indoor environments were improved,” the National Academy of Science noted in a 2005 report.

After all, it is no surprise that workers perform better in a well-lit, airy space than in a basement office with dirty walls and old-fashioned buzzing fluorescent lights, such as the one depicted in the film Joe Versus the Volcano. “I think its safe to say that good illumination, day light, and fresh air theyre no-brainers,” in terms of increasing productivity, “especially in schools,” said Nancy Anderson of the Sallan Foundation, which promotes useful ideas about greener cities.

One developer touting the benefits of an environmentally friendly workplace is Douglas Durst, who is building the $1 billion Bank of America building that has been called the greenest office tower in the world. At a recent conference on green buildings, he noted that, while a firm only spends 10 percent of its expenditures on energy, it spends 60 to 70 percent on its workers. Estimating that an improved office environment could boost productivity by 10 to 15 percent, Durst said, “We think this is where the real savings come from.”

By on May 1, 2007, 9:55 am
In category: Environment,Health,Housing,Tech | 1 Comment »

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One Response to “The Greening of the Workplace?”

  1. Streetsblog » Today’s Headlines Says:
    May 2nd, 2007 at 7:50 am

    […] Today’s Headlines NYC Competing for Congestion Pricing Funds (Sun)RELATED: Top Lobbyist Recruited to Promote Pricing (Daily News)Enviro Upgrades Increase Workplace Productivity (Wonkster)Spitzers ‘Greening’ Governor’s Mansion (NYT)No Consensus on Atlantic Yards Timetable (AYR)Police Chase Ends in Collision with School Bus (Post, Daily News)Second Vehicle Crashes into Queens House (Daily News)Car-Free Zones Boosting Urban Economies (CS Monitor)People Walking Faster in World’s Big Cities (BBC)Tour de Schumer Caption Contest (Dope on the Slope) Filed by Brad Aaron under Today’s Headlines […]

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