As climate change has brought a focus on consumption and emissions, businesses have started to realise that it’s not only the environment that benefits, their bottom line does too. There have been a variety of trends to come and go but renewables, good energy management and sustainability/energy strategies seem to be here for the long-term due to proven success.
Even though there is a lot of pressure on business with regulations being introduced as well as plenty of opportunity with grants, businesses often don’t know where to start with planning an outline or improving their energy management strategy. We can sympathise as the topic is so broad, that’s why we have put together a few points that are a good place to start.
Meeting legal requirements
Due to the implications and potential fines involved, looking at the legal requirements and constantly changing legislation is a good place to start. This will unfortunately take a bit of research on a case by case basis as different rules apply to different sectors and the size of companies also comes into account.
One key point to look out for is if you are required to report on your energy consumption and efficiency s certain companies are required to, just like you are required to submit VAT. It is worthwhile looking into Streamlined Energy & Carbon Reporting and the Energy Saving Opportunity Scheme amongst others for further information and clarity to what applies to you.
The UK has a legally binding target to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050 and it is thought that businesses account for 50% of the current total, so you can expect restrictions and the focus to only intensify over the coming months and years.
Data and analytics aren’t just for reporting
We have said it before and we will say it again, data is king. Your data and analytics allow you to make decisions that are driven by tangible evidence and will ensure you see actual results. With this in mind, what better place to focus your time when designing or improving your energy management/environmental strategy.
It doesn’t matter how much data you have to be able to make a start, simply knowing your consumption at least gives you a baseline to work with but if you have an energy management system installed like the Pilot Group EMS https://www.thepilotgroup.co.uk/services/energy-management-systems/, you’ll have a lot more in-depth analytics to delve into. Knowing your real-time usage and having comparison data for previous months/years allows you to spot trends as well as anomalies and act upon them.
Understand your area
Different parts of the country may have different opportunities. For example, in the North of the UK there are typically more wind farms and therefore access to this as a renewable energy supply, whereas down in the South there are more options for solar power. Even though the majority of energy is supplied by the major energy companies, there could be options to build relationships with independents who focus on these kinds of renewables.
The same logic applies to looking at creating your own energy to offset or replace your current usage. Access to this kind of equipment is getting easier and easier, so keep it in mind when creating your strategy.
Weigh up your options
There’s a choice when it comes to energy providers/tariffs and the features you install along with an energy management system. The best thing you can do is weigh up those options, see if you can get a cheaper energy tariff whilst also choosing a provider that either uses renewables or offsets the usage.
With an energy management system, even the basic system will significantly cut your energy consumption, the Pilot Group EMS averages a saving of 40% for customers and certain case studies have even exceeded 50%. There also comes the option to integrate the management of lighting and air conditioning which if scheduled and managed correctly can then save even more. To decide on what you require comes back to your data and where your larger outgoings are, if it’s heating then looking into an EMS could be invaluable, if it’s electricity then lighting or employee buy-in should be a focus and so on.
Who are the industry leaders?
If you are still unsure either where to start or what you can be doing then it’s always a wise move to look at your competition or industry leaders. With environmental impact such a topical conversation, you will see brands shouting about what they are doing to save energy and in turn money. This means you have what is essentially lots of case studies to base your decisions on.
Speak to the experts
At Pilot Group we have over 20 years of experience in the industry through our Vickers/Pilot Group EMS and have a team who will happily chat about how you could slash your energy bill. Get in touch with us today on 0161 5076862.