Greentrepreneur: Empire Services

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Empire Services is a commercial cleaning and facility maintenance contractor founded in Metairie, Louisiana in 1999. Empire performs commercial cleaning services for facilities such as the New Orleans Morial Convention Center, the New Orleans French Quarter, Orleans Parish School Board, 1515/1555 Poydras St., JP Morgan Chase Bank, and CenturyLink to name a few. Since 2014, Empire Services has transitioned the majority of our accounts to utilizing recycled can liners and paper products, diverting over 12,000 lbs of waste in 2015 alone. We also source most of our supplies, uniforms and equipment from local vendors and distributors, strengthening our local economy.

1. What are some of your proudest moments as owner of Empire Services?

My proudest moment as an Owner was cleaning up the Downtown Development District and French Quarter in the weeks following Hurricane Katrina. Empire Services was back in the City before water resided to begin cleanup operations and it really felt like we were playing a vital role in getting the City back on it’s feet.

2. How does your organization go about improving your social and environmental impacts?

Smart, incremental changes really start to add up and can make a difference over time. We’ve made changes toward reducing our environmental impact by using recycled consumable supplies, chemical distribution systems that minimize packaging waste, and LEED-compliant equipment that minimizes impact to the health of a working environment and its inhabitants. All of these changes start to paint a bigger picture and happen one-at-a-time.

3. What partnerships have you formed in order to leverage sustainable impact as a company?

As a member of organizations such as the USGBC, LifeCity, and the French Quarter Environmental Task Force, we try to keep our finger on the pulse of the changes happening in New Orleans. New Orleans is our home and we have to ensure we are making it a better place for future generations.

4. If you had a magic wand to change one thing that would make it easier for your company or other New Orleans businesses to go green, what would that thing be?

I would extend solar tax credits to commercial facilities instead of exclusively residential. Commercial facilities have an enormous impact on the environment and I’m confident that lots of companies would consider the benefits of solar power if the cost was more reasonable or they were given some form of incentives.

5. What advice would you give to other businesses who are trying to improve their internal practices to benefit their city and state?

Start small. Big changes often seem unattainable but working towards a larger goal step-by-step will keep you moving in the right direction.

6. Anything else you would like to tell our community of Green Card members and Green Businesses such as upcoming events or promotions they should look out for?

Empire Services is excited to be working on our second Mardi Gras clean-up in 2016. It’s a 24-7 operation and we would like to thank all of our Empire team members for their hard work. It’s truly a monumental task, Thank You!

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