I know there is an upfront cost for installing green HVACR technology. But is there also a premium charge for maintaining green equipment? Are they more exacting and more finicky than conventional systems? Or are they actually more forgiving and better running?

My mind-set, geared to design and operation, often doesn’t consider costs, and I always raise an eyebrow with quotes concerning payback and energy savings in percentages. But a small item in a weekly newspaper that I get free of charge at local businesses planted this bug in my mind.

The publication is very environmentally-focused with a renewable energy column on the front page of every issue. In one recent issue, a local politician was caught in the crossfire over what seemed to be his opposition to a major renovation project involving city streets that included some environmental aesthetics - an opposition he denies.

A quote from him that caught my eye was, “A lot of cost and time goes into maintaining projects that have green areas after they are done.” He was referring to green space - but it did jump-start my thoughts concerning the mechanical green in our industry.

I suppose I could do a lot of research into this question. But then I thought that is what a blog is for … to gather feedback from those in the better know than me. So, dear blog readers, what’s the deal? Do “green” systems cost less or more to keep running than conventional systems?