Hawthorn Woods-based business helps others go green
Hawthorn Woods resident Jeffrey Peterson, who owns Sustainability Guru Services, demonstrates the use of a sensor to detect heat loss. | Brian O'Mahoney~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: December 5, 2012 10:02AM
HAWTHORN WOODS — According to Hawthorn Woods “Sustainability Guru” Jeffrey Peterson, it’s the simplest actions that make the biggest difference in the environment.
For instance, he said that placing trash next to the recycling bins in an office maximizes employee participation in recycling, and advised using hot water and baking soda instead of more toxic chemicals to remove tarnish from silver.
Peterson also maintains that “reducing” is the most important piece of the “reduce, reuse, recycle” mantra when it comes to minimizing waste in landfills.
These are some of the tips that Peterson has for every person to integrate into their daily routine. His line of work focuses on changing the actions of both individuals and small businesses.
Peterson’s company, Hawthorn Woods-based Sustainability Guru Services, is a green consulting business that helps individuals and businesses implement their own sustainability programs. Dependent upon their goals, the end result can include a reduction in operational costs, as well as the identification of new marketing opportunities as a “green” company.
Peterson founded the company last month after he learned that there weren’t any other green consulting companies in the area. He currently operates Sustainability Guru Services from his home, at 9 Durango Court.
“Are they interested in just cost-effective investments and ideas, or are they really looking to invest in technology that may not be cost-effective, but it’s the right thing to do in terms of energy and water conservation?” Peterson said of the questions he asks in his first meeting with a client.
A certified green specialist with environmental consulting experience and a LEED Green Associate accreditation, Peterson’s explained that his expertise is in green living, environmental sustainability, the LEED rating system and green technology.
LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is the U.S. Green Building Council’s rating system for designing and constructing the world’s most energy-efficient buildings. Buildings are awarded points as they achieve success in specific areas, which include: Sustainable sites; water efficiency; energy and atmosphere; materials and resources; indoor environmental quality; and innovation and design.
“I also offer Greener Home Certifications, which are certifications completed by me through the National Association of Green Specialists to show that you’re actually running as efficiently as possible,” Peterson said.
For some homes, Peterson said that he will complete a Green Home Evaluation to provide the owner with a better plan to phase out unnecessary toxic chemicals residing in the home and eliminate or reduce the amount of pollutants. He also offers ways to compost yard and food scraps, and reduce the annual utility bill by 20 percent.
Peterson’s Home Energy Audit offers more technical assistance, in that it evaluates the home’s heating, air conditioning, ventilation equipment and whether the home is properly insulated and operating at peak efficiency.
All Green Home Evaluations scheduled before Dec. 11 will get Peterson’s hourly rate reduced from $74.99 to $39.99.
“For years I’ve been showing my friends and family how to go green and save money, so I thought I might as well make a living by living out my life’s passion,” he said.
For more information, visit www.yoursustainabilityguru.com, or call Peterson at (847) 612-6616.