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Reducing energy costs can be as valuable to businesses in Brighton and Hove as an increase in sales

In an era of increasing levels of online shopping, maintaining a successful high street business is becoming ever more challenging.

In addition to competing with the prices offered by online retailers, high street traders must also manage the cost of their premises, staff, and utility bills.

Although there can be some flexibility around the rental costs of premises and the salaries paid to staff, there is significantly greater opportunity for business-owners to achieve savings when it comes to the cost of their energy bills.

Taking measures to reduce the amount of energy a company is using will have an immediate impact on operating costs.

A report from The Carbon Trust concluded that most organisations could save up to 20% on their fuel bills by combining data insights and intelligent consumption behaviour with investments in energy efficiency or on-site generation technologies.

To put these savings into perspective, a 20% reduction in energy costs represents the same bottom line benefit as a 5% increase in sales in many businesses.

Quite simply, the less energy a company is using the more profits they can expect to achieve.

How major companies are leading the way on energy consumption reduction, and what Brighton and Hove businesses can learn

Lighting, along with heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) are costing businesses in Brighton and Hove thousands of pounds every year.

Multinational corporations like Google, Amazon and Apple have been extremely proactive in reducing their energy costs in recent years. One of the reasons for this is due to the increasing availability and affordability of technologies that can help a business to reduce its energy use.

Reducing Energy Costs of business - Apple Park - Wiki Commons
Apple Park in California runs on 100% self-generated renewable energy

The most obvious example of course is solar panels, but other technologies such as LED lamps, smart metering, motion-sensors, power-down plugs, and heat pumps have all become much more widely adopted by the world’s leading companies as they seek to strengthen their profit margin and improve their corporate social responsibility.

In the UK Tesco reports that its investment in energy efficiency between 2015 and 2018 has delivered savings of over £37 million.

Changing customer and stakeholder expectations mean you must demonstrate efforts to reduce the environmental impact of your business.

Climate experts estimate that the world has ten years to avert run away climate change by significantly reducing the amount of carbon that is released into the atmosphere each year.

Everyone from individual households and small businesses to multi-national corporations and governments has a role in achieving this greatest of challenges. 

Indeed, business is in a particularly strong position to make an impact. According to a report from the energy supplier Eon, just five business sectors – offices, retail, industrial, health and hospitality – accounted for 71% of total energy consumption.

Making certain that your business is as energy efficient and carbon-neutral as possible is one of the best ways to contribute to the climate crisis. With climate change being one of the top concerns amongst the general public, your potential customers will expect you to be taking steps to reduce the carbon footprint of your business. 

There can be no doubt that leading companies like Tesco and Amazon deploy energy saving initiatives because of the financial benefits, but they are also acutely aware that such measures provide excellent PR opportunities.

If the UK is to stand any chance of achieving its legally binding Net Zero emissions target, then the commercial sector is going to have to take a leading role. 

Case Study 1:

Annual Carbon Saving:

2.6 tonnes CO2

  • 4 kW rooftop solar PV
  • 31 dimmable LED lamps
  • Insulation

Junction Studios

Annual Financial Saving: 

£1,888

  • Secondary window glazing
  • 2.5kW wall mounted air source heat pump

First steps to improving the efficiency of your business property and reducing your energy costs

While you may not be managing a business the size of Tesco, even the smallest business can achieve valuable financial savings through energy efficiency measures and/ or renewable energy generation. 

If you’re not sure where to start making improvements to the energy performance of your property, than that is exactly what BHESCo’s Energy Saving Service was designed to help with.

One thing to bear in mind is that energy saving measures require different levels of initial investment in upgrades to your building or equipment, so it’s important to look at the long-term savings you’ll make when deciding whether to go ahead or not.

You may have addressed some of the ‘low hanging fruit’ improvements for saving energy in your business already – replacing incandescent lighting with LED lamps for example. If not, then be sure to read our blog on this topic.

Once lighting has been dealt with, you should consider improving the heating of the property, in addition to thermal efficiency improvements such as insulation and draught-proofing for doors, windows, roofs, floors, and walls. Also think about the appliances you use within your business, could you use power down plugs to save energy when they’re not being used for example?

Visit our website for more detailed information on energy efficiency for businesses.

You may also find the following case studies useful. They detail how BHESCo has already helped a variety of businesses achieve energy and financial savings.

We may even be able to improve your budgeting through our innovative Pay As You Save financing.

Case Study 2:

Annual Carbon Saving:

37 tonnes CO2

  • 2 energy efficient boilers

Horsham Bowls Club

Annual Financial Saving: 

£11,840

  • 350 LED lamps

REFERENCES:

https://www.tescoplc.com/sustainability/downloads/improving-energy-efficiency-in-our-stores-and-distribution/

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/energy-efficiency/how-businesses-can-reduce-energy-bills/

https://www.npower.com/business/energy-contracts/electricity/


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