Archive for the 'Green' Category

National Lumber’s New Bedford, MA Location Goes Solar – Installs Solar Panels on All 3 Buildings

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Image © National Lumber Company

Did you know that Massachusetts is one of the best states for solar power? With the percentage of sunny days we have in Massachusetts annually, this clean energy source is good for the environment, as it helps us move away from fossil fuels. It is good for business in providing a reliable energy source and cost savings, which allows businesses to produce more and be more efficient. Reducing costs means that money can then be spent elsewhere in the business. It is good for employment at the company using this energy source and creates local jobs for installing solar equipment.

National Lumber Company and our manufacturing division, Reliable Truss and Components, Inc., have spent $2.1 million to install solar panels on all three of our buildings in the Welby Park Industrial Park, off Exit 5 of Route 140, in New Bedford, MA. This is one of the largest roof panel installations in the state with just over one megawatt of solar energy production. Our average electric cost has been $135,000 per year. With tax credits, we expect to recoup the installation costs within four years.  Then, we expect to save 75% annually to run our manufacturing facility for wood trusses and other structural components, as well as their offices, National Lumber retail store and drive thru lumberyard. Since the store will have the lowest electric usage, the power generated will be shared with the manufacturing buildings.

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Image © National Lumber Company

National Lumber is a third generation family owned and operated company that takes environmental responsibilities seriously. As the largest independent building materials supplier in New England, we are a leader in the industry. At National Lumber, Green has a significant purpose, and that is to promote a real and meaningful environmental impact on the way we run our business and promote products to customers.

We believe that “Going Green” is about protecting the environment for all of our children. In addition to offering various environmentally friendly products, such as FSC certified lumber, we have implemented other Green Initiatives to improve procedures in our offices and manufacturing.

The old adage, “Waste not, want not”, has been optimized with modern technology. Office functions have been converted to paperless wherever possible. Office supplies are carefully managed with reusable items such as interoffice envelopes, then paper and cardboard are recycled. Auto-timers are used for more efficient heating and cooling offices; lighting indoors and outdoors are on timers. Our fleet of vehicles is kept at optimal operating condition for fuel efficiency and we have a “no idling” directive. Efficient planning of deliveries provides additional savings. Solar power was the next logical step.

Image © National Lumber Company

The installer, SolarFlair is a privately owned company based in Massachusetts. They know the area, building styles, codes and regulations to make solar power work well for businesses. The company was founded with a mission to deliver cost effective clean energy solutions to residential and commercial clients in Massachusetts. They have decades of experience in the solar energy industry and electrical power systems. In addition to their knowledge of solar technology, they offer creative financing mechanisms to deliver a product that will meet energy goals and save money for both commercial and residential clients.

Tax Incentive To Build Green

green building tax incentive helps put money back in your pocket

Energy Efficient Commercial Building Tax Deduction puts money back in your pocket.

Energy Efficient Commercial Building Tax Deduction

Have you taken advantage of the green building incentive yet? The Energy Efficient Commercial Building Tax Deduction is set to expire on December 31, 2013. The program affords building owners deductions on qualifying energy-efficient upgrades done within the last six years. Real estate advocates are in the process of lobbying Congress to extend or expand the program. Read more about the green building incentive in this article by Bendix Anderson, NuWire Investor.

Have these deductions changed the way you or your clients plan buildings?

Do You Build for Better Energy Efficiency?

A public utility company in Arizona is in the process of lobbying for stricter building codes in order to promote construction of more energy-efficient buildings. Many builders of small to medium sized buildings may not invest in energy-saving features or green products due to the initial costs, regardless of the savings and maintenance benefits the client may reap in the long run.

Ryan Randazzo, Arizona Republic, describes why it’s better to start with green building from the start in his article Building Better Energy Efficiency. He also explains why retrofitting an existing building would be beneficial for now, and for the future.

architect looks at plans for building with better energy efficiency in mind

Planning to build for better energy efficiency, right from the project’s beginning,  will result in better cost savings in the long run once the project is completed.

  • Do you agree that it would be better in the long run, enough that you would start with a green building plan from the beginning?
  • How do you feel about retrofitting existing smaller buildings with more energy-efficient upgrades?
  • How do you feel about the idea of increased government regulation of green features through building codes?

Real Benefits of Building “Green”

Over the past decade, we’ve seen some interesting developments in the building industry. One trend coming up steadily is “green” building. With a more health conscious society, making buildings with eco-friendly materials that are made for sustainability is becoming more widely accepted and encouraged. At first, it was a more expensive process than conventional non-green building, however, today the monetary playing field is beginning to level out somewhat.

By starting with a green thought process, the planning and design of the project can be tailored to include more efficient and environmentally friendly materials. There is more flexibility in purchasing green materials from vendors that have expanded their stock and adjusted pricing in order to offer these supplies more widely and readily.

Construction worker using green building materials

National Lumber offers a variety of green building materials for customers. Boise, Benjamin Moore, Centurion, Claymark and Guardian are some our featured product lines.

Builders, designers and consumers all have opportunities to benefit from this way of building and living. In an article on curbed.com, different costs are evaluated and broken out visually to show the real savings that can be obtained by careful planning at the beginning of a building project.  Builders and developers may see the value in these buildings more quickly because these buildings usually command, and receive, a higher selling price. Owners of a green building will see savings on energy costs and tenants will feel happier and healthier knowing their space is good for, not only their environment; it’s good for their own health, as well.

We have taken a meaningful approach to implementing and practicing green methods in our own work environment by installing energy efficient lighting and converting office functions to paperless wherever possible. Read more about the green methods we utilize and materials we supply.

Do you use “green” elements in your building projects currently? Are customers requesting you to use green elements in their projects? Have you seen cost savings firsthand?

National Lumber

Great Green Web Resources

Steve Linsky of our Remodelers PRO Force has provided these excellent Green building websites. Most of these sites have specific Green sections.

www.greenbuildingadvisor.com – One of the best sites in the construction industry

www.dsireusa.org – Site for rebates from all sources – federal and state

www.nahbgreen.org – Home builders’ Green web site

www.NARI.org – Remodeling industry web site – updates on laws and industry tips

www.sbcindustry.com – Wood components manufacturing industry web site

www.massenergystarhomes.com – Massachusetts Energy Star site

www.earth911.com – The latest in green news and recycling – fun site

www.nahb.org – Overall news for builders

www.greenandsave.com – Go to master ROI table for great return-on-investment tables

www.inhabitat.com – Great site, plus see the ECO labels 101: Green certifications explained

www.homeconstructionimprovement.com – General how-to on Green products and installation

www.usgbc.org – Site for LEED certification info, plus tons of other good info

You can follow Steve Linsky on Twitter @steveproforce and also now on Facebook at the PRO Force Facebook fan page.

Green Initiatives: E-mailed Statements and Invoices

In the spirit of being “Green”, we are reducing the number of items we print in the normal course of business.

The National Lumber Family of Companies have already converted office functions to paperless wherever possible. For example, reports are sent electronically. Vendor invoices, quotes and other inquiries are handled via electronic communication.
After careful planning, we are now able to e-mail customer invoices and monthly statements. It is our intention to do this for all customers. Many of you have already provided your e-mail addresses to us. If you want to confirm the e-mail address that will be used, or to sign up for the first time, please open this PDF file and print out the form on the second page. Customers receiving mailed monthly statements will also be receiving this form with their next statement.
Fill out the form and return it with your next payment and indicate that you are giving permission to use this e-mail address to send your statements and invoices. You can choose to receive e-mailed invoices as they occur or only monthly with your e-mailed statement.
We will continue to provide you with information via e-mail about upcoming events, special savings, new products, etc. from the National Lumber Family of Companies.
We do not sell, rent, or otherwise provide your personal information to any third parties for marketing purposes. We respect your privacy.
If you have any questions about receiving your monthly statements and invoices by e-mail, contact Anna Rice at arice@national-lumber.com or 508-339-8020 x643.
Thank you for your business.


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