Surprisingly, the self-storage industry is actually inherently green. Facilities use far fewer resources to operate that most other businesses use to occupy the same space. Many locations have even taken it a step further and have embraced the green movement. The growing popularity of recycling and alternate energy forms has positioned this industry as a leading force in this sector. Let’s take a look at some of the things being put into effect by these storage facilities, and see what we can learn from them.
Going green doesn’t necessarily mean you have to drive an electric car to your facility and put a solar panel on your roof. Storage business can do their part just by recycling and doing what they can to conserve. Some storage chains have embraced document shredding as their way to go green and have even gone as far as holding a document-shredding event.
When we talk about recycling, we don’t just mean put your aluminum and plastic in bins separate from your trash. Another important branch is recycling used electronics. Electronic waste in the most rapidly growing form of waste in the U.S. so whenever you can, take the opportunity to recycle your old computers, TVs, phones and any other types of electric devices.
Some storage operators have discovered that using different cleaning and landscaping chemicals can seriously minimize their facilities negative environmental impact. Instead of old mops, strong odor cleaners and dirty water buckets, many places are switching to spray cleaners, reusable cleaning cloths and quick-dry floor liquids. Simple changes like this can go a long way for the environment, and can improve the workplace for employees.
Facilities everywhere are coming up with new, creative solutions to energy sustainability issues. In addition to traditional methods like installing timers for lights and improving insulation, alternative energy solutions are becoming much more affordable for businesses. A geothermal air conditioning system for example, pumps water from hot underground wells into a ventilation system in the facility walls, which drastically increases the building’s efficiency while reducing costs. Ventilation and temperature control are primary concerns for individual unit spaces, accounting for insulation challenges at self-storage facilities.
Many storage facilities being designed today are being constructed with solar energy in mind. Each solar panel that is being used is projected to produce somewhere around 1.5 megawatts of renewable energy, that is a huge amount of clean energy.
As far as green solutions go in the self-storage industry, this is just the beginning. Hopefully, with a further push, our actions will inspire others to bring a new sustainable future to the storage business.
This article was written by Matt Schexnayder. Matt is on the SpareFoot marketing team and writes for the SpareFoot blog. SpareFoot is the largest online marketplace for self-storage with more than 5,000 self-storage facilities listed nationwide.