2013- 2014 GBC Workshops and Gala


Resiliency Planning for Businesses – May 2014 Green Business Challenge Workshop

Did you know that 70% of small firms that experience a major data loss go out of business within a year?*

Statistics show that 25% of businesses do not reopen after a natural disaster and 43% do not re-open after catastrophic data loss.*

This could be because 60% of U.S. small businesses do not have a formal emergency-response plan and do not back-up their data off-site.* This makes businesses vulnerable to catastrophic loss, such as a flood or freeze (events we are familiar with in El Paso!).

Are there ways that businesses can sustain through a changing climate and be more resilient to disaster?

YES! To learn more, please join us for our next workshop about Resiliency Planning for Businesses. We will have Chief Scott Calderwood, the Emergency Management Coordinator, presenting at this workshop, along with experts from the RCES Center, and Patrick McGrail, the General Manager of NewsBank, Inc.

If you would like to join this workshop, please RSVP here! Add the event to your Outlook calendar by clicking here.

Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo (Cotton Patch Room) El Paso, Texas 79907 on Tuesday, May 27, 2014 from 2 PM to 3:30 PM

Chief Scott Calderwood - Emergency Management Coordinator Chief Scott Calderwood is a Deputy Chief of the El Paso Fire Department; he currently serves as the Emergency Management Coordinator for City and County of El Paso, Texas.

Chief Calderwood started his career with the department in 1989 as a firefighter, and he has served as a battalion chief, water rescue team member, and hazmat technician, just to name a few. He was appointed as El Paso's Emergency Management Coordinator in 2011 and has directed El Paso's Emergency Operations Center during several disaster incidents including flooding and winter storm events. As Emergency Management Coordinator, he is responsible for all disaster functions within the City and County of El Paso. Chief Calderwood serves as a steering committee member for the State of Texas' All Hazards Incident Management Team. He is also responsible for overseeing the region's Urban Area Strategic Initiative - Homeland Security Grant Program. Born in Denver, Colorado, Chief Calderwood has lived in El Paso for 32 years.

The RCES Center develops cyber and energy security capabilities addressing the technical, regulatory, and commercialization challenges. The RCES Center also stimulates opportunities associated with the intersection of cyber, cyber-physical, and energy security technologies, particularly the increasing overlap of information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT).

NewsBank, inc. has been one of the world’s premier information providers for more than 40 years. NewsBank’s comprehensive, Web-based research products satisfy the diverse needs of public libraries, colleges and universities, schools, military and government libraries, professionals and researchers.


How to Encourage Long-Lasting Behavior Change to Support Energy Efficiency Goals

Join us for a FREE workshop about how to create long-lasting changes in your organization to ensure energy savings for the long-term!

So you've changed out your light bulbs and upgraded your HVAC equipment, but you're still not seeing the savings you would like to see... how can this be?

What we've found in past Energy Savings Challenges is that an organization or company can have the most energy efficient building in the city, but unless the USERS understand the operation and benefits, the value of these energy efficiency upgrades may never be fully realized.

Our energy savings challenges focused on education for the users, and how changes in their behavior can effectively drive energy costs down. After explaining the benefits of natural light, keeping windows closed and turning excess lights off, our challenge participants started to understand that they could have a major effect on energy savings with very little effort.

Our winner in the Fire Station Energy Challenge, Fire Station 29,

reduced their energy costs in one month by 30% and overall throughout the six month challenge by 21% (from the previous year). Captain Hernandez from Fire Station 29 said it was just as simple as "turning off the lights."

If that's the case, how do we encourage employees and colleagues to follow energy-efficiency guidelines and support our energy savings goals?

At this April workshop, we will tell you how we were able to reduce the percentage of the time that unnecessary lights were left on in our office from 11% to 3%. We will give you all the resources you need to ensure that you have the policies and plans to supplement your energy efficiency improvements and goals. If you would like to join this workshop, please RSVP here.

Snacks will be provided at this workshop.

Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo (Cotton Patch Room) El Paso, Texas 79907 on Tuesday, April 22, 2014 (Earth Day!) from 3 PM to 4:30 PM

Click here for the presentation from this workshop.
Click here for the documents from this workshop on CD.

Solar Electricity 001 – Green Business Challenge Workshop

Bring your cameras, notebooks and pencils, everyone! Join us for our next Green Business Challenge workshop for a step-by-step solar electricity training!

During this SPECIAL TWO-HOUR workshop, participants will learn what solar electricity is and how it works. This workshop will give you the understanding you need to take your solar electricity knowledge to the next level. This class will be taught by experts who can answer any question you have about solar electricity.

Interested in installing solar on your home or business? Take the first step to becoming a photovoltaic module expert!

Each of the building blocks of what comprises a solar electric system is discussed as a lab instructor builds an operational off-grid system (step-by-step) right in front of the class! Participants are encouraged to test the system for themselves after the build.

Space is limited, so please RSVP to

Snacks will be provided at this workshop.

Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo (Cotton Patch Room) El Paso, Texas 79907 on Tuesday, March 25, 2014 from 2:30 pm to 4:30 pm

Picture Gallery for the presentation from this workshop.

Sustainable Transportation

Bus, Bike, Walk, Carpool: Choose to use active and alternative transportation options
Join us for the February 2014 Green Business Challenge workshop about sustainable transportation options!

Learn about how you can reduce costs and choose more environmentally-friendly options PLUS learn about all the new transportation changes that are happening in our community AND enjoy a free and delicious lunch.

We will have Laura Cruz-Acosta, the Marketing and Public Affairs Coordinator for Sun Metro, updating us about the Rapid Transit System and explaining a little more about Sun Metro routes, opportunities, and benefits.

We will also have Fred Lopez, the Transportation Planning Manager for the City of El Paso, joining us to talk about the value associated with "complete streets" and what plans the City has to improve our streets to promote walkability, bikeability, and livability!

Then, we will explain carpool options, including iCarpool and Vámonos Vanpool, and we will explain the progress with the Bike Share Program in El Paso.

Lastly we will end with several tips to help you drive efficiently in your company vehicles and personal vehicles in order to save fuel, reduce costs, and improve our air quality.

Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo, El Paso, TX in the Cotton Patch Room on Wednesday, February 26, 2014 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM (Please note that the workshop will start right at 11:30 am—we will be tight on time!)


All About LEED

Join us for a FREE workshop about Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)
We're kicking off the new year with a workshop all about an increasingly popular topic--Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

If you are interested in saving money, conserving energy, reducing water consumption, improving indoor air quality, and making better building material choices, then this workshop is for you!

This workshop will be led by Nicole Ferrini and Emily Greggerson, LEED AP BD+C Consultants, who have many years of experience consulting on LEED projects in El Paso, including Project Vida and the José Cisneros Cielo Vista Library. There are several LEED Certified buildings in El Paso, and Nicole and Emily have consulted on many on these projects. Check out their full bios here.

Nicole and Emily are also active participants in our Green Business Challenge and in the community, serving on boards such as Eco El Paso and the USGBC Chihuahuan Desert Chapter.

LEED has numerous benefits, read more here:

Parking is free and easy at the Municipal Service Center. If you have any questions, please email us at or check out our website at

Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo Dr., El Paso, Texas 79907 on Wednesday, January 29, 2014 from 12 PM to 1 PM

Click for Video

Click here for the presentation from this workshop.

In lieu of a workshop during the holidays, check out this newsletter full of great tips to help you reduce, reuse and recycle throughout the holidays!

December 2013 Newsletter


How Embracing "Green" Can Give Your Business the Competitive Advantage

Green Business Challenge Workshop
"Going Green" not only helps the environment and your energy bills, but is it attracting customers? If your business advertises its social responsibility and care for the environment, will that give your business a competitive edge? Dr. Norma Mendoza has extensive experience in the marketing field and will explain how YOUR business can benefit from embracing “green” policies and procedures.

Come learn how you can increase your sales and win over clients and customers by showcasing the environmentally-conscious changes you have made in your business!

Parking is free and easy at the Municipal Service Center. If you have any questions, please email us at or check out our website at

Cotton Patch Room, Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo on November 7, 2013 from 12 pm to 1 pm


Save Money: Energy Audits and Energy Efficiency Incentives

Come learn how you can save hundreds of dollars by assessing the efficiency of your home or business and taking advantage of the efficiency incentives that are available!

Dennis Wike, President of CE 3 Solutions, will explain the many benefits of conducting an energy audit. An energy checkup helps homeowners and businesses determine where their house is losing energy and money - and how such problems can be corrected to make the home more energy efficient. Check-up steps include checking for leaks, examining insulation, inspecting the furnace and ductwork, performing a blower door test and using an infrared camera.

Araceli G. Perea, Sr. Energy Efficiency Program Coordinator for EP Electric, will give a quick overview of the different Energy Efficiency Programs available for residential and commercial customers. She will also define the difference between Small & Large Commercial customers and introduce their new HVAC Tune-up Program.

Cotton Patch Room, Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo on Monday, October 28, 2013 from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm

Click here for the presentation from this workshop.

How to Improve Your Business and Buy Local

Come join us to learn how the EPCC Small Business Development Center can help you market and expand your green business! Also, Pencil Cup Office Products, Inc. will share the environmental benefits of buying local, and what options are available to help you go green in your office!

These two groups want to help local companies succeed here in El Paso, so come find out what resources are available to help you maximize your marking efforts and your GREEN efforts!

This is a FREE workshop—please bring along anyone that might be interested in joining.

Cotton Patch Room, Municipal Service Center, 7968 San Paulo on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 from 12pm to 1pm


Learning the Basics of the Green Business Challenge

Welcome to Year TWO of the Green Business Challenge!
August Workshop: Getting Started in the Challenge

This is the first workshop will help business get started in the challenge-we will provide you with the resources thet are available thet can help yoou save money on you energy bill. We will hep you with the scorecard, give you a few suggestions for how to get the bill rolling, and answer any questions you have about the challenge!

On Thursday, August 22, 2013

Click here for the presentation from this workshop.

2012 - 2013 GBC Workshops and Gala


2013 GBC Awards Gala

Lunch will be provided and there will be door prizes! Parking in the Doubletree Garage is free to all Gala guests.
We will be recognizing outstanding participants who improved the most and excelled in the Green Business Challenge. We would like to thank all of our participants and for all of their hard work put into this challenge.

On Thursday, May 2nd, 2013 from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM At Doubletree in Downtown El Pasa 600 N El Paso St.


All About Solar

Join us for a tour of a facility powered by solar this March 27th from 11:30 am to 1 pm. Led by the installer, this tour will help you understand how solar works, if it is a good option for your building, and tips for installation. How much money could you save by installing solar panels? Would it be worth your investment? Javier Ruiz from Border Solar will give us an inside look and help answer all of our solar questions!

Lunch will be provided.

On Wednesday, March 27th from 11:30 am to 1 pm At El Paso Association of Builders at 6046 Surety Drive.


Green Purchasing and Employee Engagement

Come learn how to reduce your paper, ink, and energy usage with help from Office Depot Manager, Errol Muller. He will show you all the great recycled products available for businesses and how the right office equipment can really cut down on your product and energy usage. Then, Ysleta Library Branch Manager, Aimee Camp, will explain what strategies she used to engage and encourage her employees to get on the GREEN train! Learn what methods will have your employees excited to reduce and recycle.

On Wednesday, February 27, from 12 pm - 1 pm At Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce, Lockhart Room, at 10 Civic Center Plaza.


Ho, Ho, How to Have a GREEN Holiday Newsletter

In lieu of a workshop during the holidays, we created a newsletter full of holiday-themed tips for our Green Business Challenge participants.


What’s next?

Find out about LEED, Energy Star and other rating systems


Sustainable Transportation

It's all about sustainable transportation. The USGBC-Chihuahuan Desert, Sun Metro, Crazy Cat Cyclery, and the City of El Paso will fill you in on the details about public transportations options in the region including a Sun Metro bus demonstration, safe bicycle riding around town, and a new carpool matching service coming soon to our region.

November 14th, 2012 10:00am-12:00pm
Union Plaza Transit Terminal
located at 400 West San Antonio Avenue, El Paso, TX 79901 .
*Free Parking with validated ticket


Understanding your Energy Bills

Wednesday September 26th 2012, 12 to 1pm, El Paso Association of Builders at 6046 Surety Drive


Water Conservation

Come and learn ways for businesses to conserve water by providing valuable tips and information about ways to be water smart. Listen to Anai Padilla from El Paso Water Utilities and Eduardo Perez with Purifika Water Systems talk about ways to conserve water in the workplace.

Lunch will be provided so RSVP at or 541.4468.

on Thursday 30th, 2012, from 12-1pm
at Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce at 10 Civic Center Plaza


Energy Efficiency

Identify ways to reduce your energy consumption and increase energy efficiency. Paul Royalty, El Paso Electric's Energy Efficiency & Utilization Manager, will discuss programs available to help with energy retrofits and an example of a retrofit project. Ray Portillo and Jorge Guajardo from Graybar will talk about lighting efficiency technology available. Please RSVP at or 541-4468

On Wednesday, July 25th, Noon to 1pm
Venue: El Paso Electric Offices, 100 N. Stanton, El Paso, Texas 79901


Recycling and Waste Reduction

Come learn about waste reduction and recycling and hear what one of the GBC participants have been doing to reduce waste while leveraging cost. Speakers: Morris Friedman, Friedman Recycling and Anita Dominguez, AMEC Earth & Environmental RSVP at or 915-541-4468 by Monday, 25th.

On Thursday, June 28, 2012, 12:00pm until 1:00pm
Venue: MSC Administration, Cotton Patch Room, 7968 San Paulo, El Paso TX 79907


Getting Started: Identifying Baselines, Establishing Goals

An introduction to the Green Business Challenge. Learn to identify where your company is wasting money and resources by using tools available to identifying baselines and establishing goals. Speakers: Marty Howell, Sustainability Manager, City of El Paso, and Dr. Bill Mitchell, Dale Carnegie Training. Noon to 1:30 p.m. May 22,
2012 at the Greater El Paso Chamber of Commerce, 10 Civic Center Plaza.
RSV by May 17 to 541-4468 or

Check back here for updates on training dates, times and location.