The triple bottom line is often described as “people, planet, profit”. But how many for-profit companies put the people first?
The BuildingLens suite of products really is being rolled out in that order. Our first piece of software, AirLens, is solely for the purpose of improving indoor air quality (IAQ), because great IAQ supports great health and wealth outcomes.
Once AirLens is installed and we’ve built trust in that product and service, we’ll offer Energy Lens. This will reduce energy use while AirLens still works to protect good IAQ. EnergyLens is the “planet” part of the plan. Finally, Album Suite will offer anonymized data from these products to utilities to balance their grids for clean energy. Album Suite is the “profit” part.
In “Harnessing the power of healthy buildings research to advance health for all”, exposure scientists and environmental epidemiologists agree. They flag the key role of buildings, which use 40% of the world’s energy.
It’s a short read, but this “Nature” article speaks volumes on optimizing for more than one purpose.
They imagine buildings as “health promoting environments” with “ventilation standards designed for health”. In work environments, this means workers are able to show up more and get more done. Ventilation supports this by bringing in fresh air from outside when possible. Managing ventilation for real conditions in the present, instead of “one and done” modeling, is worth it. The cost of equipment to provide “personalized ventilation” can be offset with savings to owners and occupants.
They call for equity in research using building types from around the world. They want to include “races and ethnicities that have been… under-represented” in the past. They note the lack of research on the unique needs of female bodied people.
Published in 2019, this article wasn’t the first time, or the last time, that others have called for the same.
“Our journey at Building Lens has made one thing clear. Technology must provide immediate, actionable value to the people of today if it will be of value to the people of the future. That’s why we take care of people in the building first.”David Burchfield, CEO of Building Lens
When people notice that they feel better and can think more clearly, we gain their trust. Then they’ll want to help us decrease the energy use in the building. If they pay the energy bill, then we can lower it. If they own the building, we can reduce operating costs and increase property value. If they live in the broader community, then our community mitigates climate change for everyone.
Climate justice, buildings, and good health are impossible to separate. At BuildingLens, we are “harnessing the power” towards a triple bottom line we think of as “people, planet, and prosperity”.