Cooperative Energy Futures

has been certified by the Green America’s Green Business Network as an environmentally and socially responsible business. This business has reached the Silver tier by adopting principles and practices that demonstrate a strong commitment to conserving the environment and supporting social justice.

The Green America’s Green Business Network is proud to recognize their contribution to creating and growing a green economy by supporting the needs of their customers, workers, the environment, and the community. We appreciate your continued support of Cooperative Energy Futures and thank you for your commitment to sustainability.

Member Since: 10/17/2012

Seal Valid Until: 10/17/2013

Cooperative Energy Futures has completed the following initiatives:

  • Building an Equitable, Supportive & Inclusive Workplace
  • Make an explicit effort through your hiring process to attract a diverse pool of job applicants (i.e. religion, race, sexual and gender identity, etc.).

  • Provide formal support to your staff and workers for dealing with work-related stress.

  • Offer employees flexible schedules to promote work life balance.

  • Offer eligible employees paid vacation days.

  • Offer eligible employees paid sick days.

  • Offer health Insurance or assurance of coverage to employees and their families.

  • Offer a scholarship program or subsidies to support employee continuing education.

  • Implement a process for regular employee performance evaluations from peers and subordinates. 

  • Implement a process for regular employee performance evaluations from supervisors.

  • Offer a buying club or discounts for employees.

  • Institute grievance procedures to provide staff members with a process for addressing concerns or disagreements related to the violation of company policies.

  • Engage office teams to lead specific issues or projects within the office (i.e. event planning, health and wellness, space allocation, etc.).

  • Offer eligible employees a retirement savings program.

  • Reducing Emissions & Exposure To Toxins
  • Select office space in a LEED certified building or in a space with a clear track record of green building improvements. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Install a filtered water tap at your sink or a water cooler for drinking water, instead of purchasing bottled water. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Use natural pest management practices or minimize the use of toxic pesticide chemicals in indoor spaces. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Relax the office dress code to allow for attire that doesn't require drycleaning, and encourage employees to switch to non-toxic dry cleaners. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Use natural odor elimination methods, i.e. ventilating with open windows, air filters, carbon odor eliminators.

  • Minimizing Transportation Impacts
  • Create incentives to encourage employee carpools, public transportation, or bicycling as a means of transportation.

  • Designate car pool and hybrid parking spaces that are in preferred areas of your parking lot.

  • Use telepresence or other long-distance communication to replace travel when possible.

  • Encourage creative scheduling and telecommuting possibilities for your employees.

  • Required Actions
  • Bronze: After completing the GreenGain assessment, analyze your current sustainability performance and develop a plan that prioritizes initiatives based on your results.

  • Bronze: Create personal goals to help champion green initiatives throughout your company, or designate a green leader or Green Team for your business.

  • Bronze: Based on your specific industry, describe to us the major area of social and environmental impact (pick one for each) of your business and how you're currently addressing it.

  • Bronze: Establish a process to receive regular advice/mentoring on how to improve your business performance. For a business that hires employees or uses interns/volunteers, establish a process for providing clear feedback on performance.

  • Bronze: Develop a social and environmental mission and vision statement for your business and post it on your website.

  • Bronze: Create and publish a clear return/refund/cancellation process for products and/or service contracts for customers/clients.

  • Silver: Identify any major environmental sourcing concerns in your supply chain and address at least one with a clear action plan. (If you are a service-based business, please click 'Complete').

  • Silver: Recommend environmentally preferable products and services to all of your clients (If you are a product-based business, please click 'Complete').

  • Silver: Establish practices to support the development and training of your employees and/or interns/volunteers. If you have 0-1 employees, develop and implement a yearly plan for professional growth and development.

  • Silver: Complete at least three initiatives in the "Supporting Your Community" category below.

  • Silver: Install the display source code for your Green America Seal of Approval on your website.

  • Gold: Describe your biggest new opportunity around social and environmental sustainability and how you plan to implement it.

  • Gold: Develop a fair labor Code of Conduct and require written consent from your core suppliers (If you are a service-based business, please click 'Complete').

  • Gold: Implement policies that encourage employee job flexibility and work life balance. If you have 0-1 employees, develop and implement a plan to build stronger work life balance.

  • Gold: Take a leadership role in an organization that continually works to improve the environment or social responsibility nationally or in your area.

  • Gold: List the date your business first opened (must be in operation at least six months to earn Gold status).

  • Silver: Identify any potential labor concerns in your workplace (service business) or supply chain (product company) and address at least one with a clear action plan.

  • Conserving Resources, Recycling & Minimizing Waste
  • Use recycled or re-used boxes, bags, and general packaging for office mailings, shipping, marketing, and promotions.

  • Reduce outgoing mail by updating the contact information on your business's mailing lists regularly.

  • Establish a paper recycling program for newspaper, office paper, direct mail, white and colored paper, cardboard, envelopes, magazines, and catalogs.

  • Use printers that have a duplexing (two-sided copying and printing) function, and print/copy double sided when possible.

  • Establish a recycling program that includes glass, plastic, and aluminum.

  • Eliminate unnecessary paper forms for administrative functions and use electronic forms when possible (ie. digital faxes, electronic receipts, digital pay stubs).

  • Responsibly dispose of hazardous items, such as CFL/fluorescent light bulbs, batteries, paint, and electronic waste.

  • Develop a paper stewardship and reduction policy, and conduct a paper reduction campaign.

  • Sell or donate unneeded furniture and office equipment.

  • Use reusable or compostable catering supplies for business meetings and events (i.e. digital handouts, re-usable dishware and linens, or biodegradable flatware).

  • Reduce the amount of paper used in marketing materials by eliminating envelopes, using fold and mail, providing information electronically, etc.

  • Tracking Performance & Progress
  • Regularly update your customers about your business' efforts to become more environmentally and socially responsible (i.e. through company newsletters, press releases, tweets, etc.).

  • Saving Energy & Using Renewable Energy Sources
  • Reduce air leaks with weather stripping and caulking around windows and doorways.

  • Replace older light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps (CFLS), light emitting diodes (LEDS), and other more energy efficient light bulbs as they burn out.

  • Develop an energy conservation policy or program that encourages employees to support energy conservation.

  • Use your lighting more efficiently with daylight dimmers and/or task lighting.

  • Reduce phantom vampire power loads by installing after hour timers on non-essential electrical appliances or using smart power strips.

  • Use ceiling fans and cross ventilation in place of air conditioning when possible.

  • Upgrade your building roof to increase efficiency using reflective materials, lighter paint, or a green roof.  (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Add insulation and a timer to your hot water heater, or use a tankless water heater. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Hire an Energy Services Company (ESCO).

  • Saving Water
  • Obtain an assessment of your building's water use to identify specific water conservation ideas. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Install a smart irrigation controller that uses weather data to irrigate appropriately. (If you work out of a home office, click 'Complete'.)

  • Install low-flow aerators on faucets and showerheads or sensor controls that turn faucets on and off automatically.

  • Use high-efficiency plumbing fixtures, like high efficiency toilets (HETs) and urinals (HEUs) to minimize water use.

  • Use water-conserving cleaning methods when possible (i.e. sweeping instead of mopping and hosing).

  • Supporting Responsible Industry Practices
  • Regularly review your marketing and promotional materials to ensure there is no use of negative stereotypes.

  • Actively participate in advocacy or lobbying work to raise awareness around environmental and/or social issues.

  • Regularly educate yourself on the progress of responsible environmental and social practices in your industry.

  • Purchase supplies and/or materials from green-certified or Green America certified companies.

  • Supporting Your Community
  • Reserve a certain number of hours per year for employees to volunteer on local environmental or community projects (e.g., Habitat for Humanity, Earth Day).

  • Become an active member of an organization that continually works to improve the environment and social justice, nationally or in your region.

  • Develop a policy outlining your commitments for partnering with or giving back to local communities.

  • Actively recruit from underserved or special needs communities.

  • Bank with a community development bank or credit union.

  • Offer your office space as a meeting or events location to a community organization.

  • Operating With Transparency
  • Implement processes and policies to support active participation of workers in management (i.e. Board of Directors, Executive teams, etc.).

  • Clearly disclose to all staff members any internal policies, practices or code of ethics that impact employees.

  • Implement profit-sharing plans with staff.

  • Implement a democratic voting process or consensus approach for key business decisions.

Green America is a not-for-profit membership organization founded in 1982 (formerly "Co-op America" until January 1, 2009). Its mission is to harness economic power—the strength of consumers, investors, businesses, and the marketplace—to create a socially just and environmentally sustainable society.

Green America's Green Business Network™ is the first, largest, and most diverse network of socially and environmentally responsible businesses in the country. The Green Business Network serves to connect, market, and grow the green marketplace. The Green America Seal of Approval recognizes businesses that meet Green America’s rigorous certification standards and display a deep commitment to consumers, communities, workers, and the planet.