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Gary Gunderson's Wood Dale, Ill., business is inherently greener than most. Recycle Technologies, his eight-person, $2 million company, manufactures and sells recycled antifreeze, which is 20% cheaper and has a carbon footprint about 80% smaller than the new stuff—but works just as well and for just as long. Last year, Gunderson realized his operations could use a little greening, too. He paid Glencoe (Ill.)-based Skiba Consulting $3,400 to assess everything from the company's natural gas and electricity use to its water and diesel fuel consumption. While the company is just now implementing those recommendations, Gunderson believes he can cut his $87,000 utility bill by up to 15%.
Gunderson says he's driven primarily by his environmental consciousness and a desire to cut costs. But he also expects a marketing benefit as big corporate clients increasingly look for vendors who've taken the lead on their own. "As [our company] becomes more focused on sustainability, it's a great selling story," he explains.