Program Process

With a focus on energy and water, Southface partners with nonprofits to identify areas where cost savings can occur. After completing the application and pre-assessment, the process begins with a facilities assessment that provides Southface with an understanding of how your building runs. Once an energy and water baseline is created and recommendations are made, Southface works hand-in-hand with each organization’s designated Green Champion to prioritize improvements and implement them.

Interested in becoming a partner of GoodUse? Here’s how it works:

  1. Application & Building Survey

    Interested nonprofits must complete the eligibility survey and application in order to be considered for the program. Providing Southface with organizational background and building information allows us to understand your facility and provide in-house resources that fit your needs most effectively. Before moving on to the next step, Southface engineers will assist you with tracking your energy and water use through Energy Star Portfolio Manager.

  2. On-Site Facilities Assessment

    Southface engineers execute a building assessment through the lens of a building scientist. During the onsite assessment, engineers collect measurements around building envelope, water and electricity use, mechanical systems, plumbing systems and more to identify low-cost, high-win recommendations for upgrades to your facility.

  3. Implementation

    Once the on-site facility assessment and benchmarking phases are complete, your organization will receive a customized assessment report that includes suggestions for facility upgrades. Your organization will select from a list of projects to pursue grant funding. Once a project is selected, Southface partners with your organization on bid selection, project management and implementation. Your organization will have a 12-month period in which to complete project implementation.

  4. Data Collection & Final Inspection

    Once project implementation is complete, Southface engineers will complete a final on-site assessment of your facility to ensure proper installation and performance of the recommended projects. Finally, focusing on long-term impact, Southface collaborates with your organization to continually measure success after project implementation. Nurturing these partnerships means sustainable results for the communities nonprofits serve.


Survey & Application

Interested in becoming a GoodUse partner? Please review the Frequently Asked Questions and Eligibility Requirements and then complete our eligibility survey by clicking on the Apply button below to see if your organization is a good fit.

  • Buy Clean Electricity

    These days, there are ways to opt for renewable electricity directly from power suppliers. This “green power” or “clean power” can be purchased through green pricing, competitive electricity markets, and green certificates. Many of these options let you choose not only how your electricity is generated but who generates it, so you can make green decisions right at the source.

  • Rethink Your Thermostat

    Set the thermostat on your water heater to 120°F. You can also insulate your hot-water storage tank and the first six feet of the hot and cold water pipes connected to the water heater. For long-term savings, on-demand natural gas or tankless water heaters can heat water directly without using a storage tank, which can save up to 30% compared with a standard natural-gas storage-tank water heater.

  • Switch Your Lights

    Lighting can account for 20% to 50% of electricity consumption, which means you can realize tremendous cost savings by making energy-efficient improvements. Explore the use of compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs), improved halogen systems, high-intensity discharge (HID) lighting systems, and lighting controls. Also, updating incandescent exit signs can increase their energy efficiency by three to eight times.

  • Upgrade HVAC Systems

    Replacing less efficient HVAC equipment can cut energy costs by as much as 20%. This also promotes a healthier environment as it improves filtration and decreases the amount of particulates in the air. In addition, utility companies often offer rebates or savings for replacing HVAC units as heating and cooling are both big energy users.

  • Replace Plumbing with Low-flow Faucets and Ultra-efficient Toilets

    Today’s water fixtures are designed to use less water while meeting efficiency and performance standards. Inspect the flow rates of faucets and aerators, and make sure they’re designed to reduce water usage. Toilets should be low-flow, as well. Federal law mandates that all toilets manufactured in the U.S. must use an average of 1.6 gallons per flush or less.

  • Install Programmable Thermostats

    Digital programmable thermostats let you adjust the heating and cooling lower or higher for an eight-hour period. In the winter, set the temperature 10 to 15 degrees lower when you’re asleep or away. During the summer, set the air conditioner for 10 to 15 degrees higher. This can save you 5% to 15% annually on your energy bills — as much as 1% for each degree you set higher or lower during an eight-hour period.

  • Add Roof and Wall Insulation

    Insulation can reduce the amount of energy you consume year-round, and reduce your energy bills. In cold or hot weather, insulation keeps the warm and cold air either in or out as needed. Look for an insulation’s R-values—the greater the R-value, the greater the insulating capacity of the material.

  • Consult Your Utility Company About Opportunities for Savings

    Some utility programs run their own rebates, and others hire a third-party contractor to implement their rebate program. Find out who to talk to at your utility company, and develop a primary point of contact for all your rebate questions.

  • Turn Off Computers and Other Devices

    Turn off your monitor when you won’t be using it for 20 minutes, and turn off your computer when you won’t be using it for two hours. Also, make sure your monitors, printers and other accessories are on a power strip or surge protector. This lets you turn off the switch at the power strip so your equipment doesn’t draw power even when it’s off. Turning off a power strip prevents additional energy drain from electronics that are plugged into it but turned off.

“Getting the assessment done; having someone come in and think more comprehensively was right on time for us. It makes you feel confident about your next steps.”

Susan Kidd
Agnes Scott College

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