Experts point out importance of a green workplace at engineering conference

Businesses that are going green may find that filling their office with environmentally friendly products does a lot more than help the ecosystem, it can improve employee morale and consequently, productivity.

"Green building is good business. Green building certifications attract tenants, employees, even students … People want to work in green buildings, and comfortable, happy workers are more productive workers," Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chairman of the U.S. Green Building Council, said in a statement.

Fedrizzi has been working hard to promote green building, as demonstrated by his keynote address entitled "People, Planet and Performance" at the Carrier Global Engineering Conference in Las Vegas. He explained that eco-friendly buildings can generate life-cycle savings of 20 percent of the construction costs, according to a press release from Carrier, a heating and cooling solutions firm.

The other speakers at the event agreed that the level of productivity in the workplace is concurrent with how satisfied employees are with the environment they work in. One of those presenters was Robert Fox, Jr., who has been an advisor to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability.

In Fox's presentation, "Biophilia: The Instinctive Bond between Humans and Nature," he said that when workers have plenty of light and their surroundings are flush with materials like wood, stone and leather, they may be more productive, according to the source.

Biophilia is more than just the name to a Bjork album, it's the affinity that humans have with environmental and natural surroundings.

Another keynote speaker, Bill Browning from Terrapin Bright Green, said that the body can recognize differences between natural goods and artificially manufactured products, according to Carrier. When it's surrounded by green, authentic materials, the body is at ease.

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