Archive for February, 2015

A recent npower survey found that 49% of UK manufacturers are unaware of the new Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS), while 69% feel uninformed about the scheme’s requirements.

Organisations meeting the ESOS criteria must complete an energy audit by 5 December 2015 or face fines of up to £90,000. The policy is designed to help businesses cut energy use as part of the UK’s commitment to cutting carbon emissions.

While the audit is mandatory, implementing the efficiency recommendations is not, which leaves ESOS at risk of being seen as a costly tick-box exercise, rather than something with the potential to reduce energy consumption at the average business by 20%.

Long-term benefits of ESOS

ESOS will only turn from cost to benefit if the recommendations are implemented, so it’s important to consider your capacity to deliver these recommendations when appointing your ESOS Lead Assessor.

A ‘full service’ Assessor will help to maximise savings through impartial advice on the best solutions tailored to your operational and financial criteria that:

  • improve your bottom-line
  • reduce energy consumption
  • future-proof your business against rising energy costs
  • make premises more comfortable and efficient for your staff and customers

Energy management system

With ESOS now on a 4-yearly cycle it’s also worth establishing an energy management system that makes future compliance straightforward, particularly energy data collection and an asset register that includes key ESOS data.

A robust system means that next time round ESOS can become a stock-taking exercise that measures progress, highlights new opportunities and maintains efficiency momentum, rather than a costly one-off project that has little long-term benefit.

To gain a clear idea of the costs and benefits of ESOS do get in touch.

 

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The domestic and commercial roll-out of smart, or automated meters, is underway, albeit fairly slowly, but there are strong arguments for organisations, particularly those with multiple sites, to take the initiative rather than wait for a supplier to impose a solution that may not meet your needs.

The key benefits of automated meter reading (AMR) include:

  • Accurate billing: meter reads will automatically be sent to your supplier, putting an end to estimated invoices, improving accuracy and budgeting. For those with tenants, AMRs make re-billing more straightforward, while also providing charging transparency.
  • Smarter procurement: when re-negotiating your supply contracts you’ll have accurate consumption profiles (peak demand times etc), which reduces uncertainty for suppliers and gives you a stronger negotiating position
  • Energy management: daily consumption data from every site can be accessed on-line (or pushed through in emailed reports) meaning you can easily monitor consumption across your portfolio. Reliable data is the bedrock of effective energy management, from alerts if equipment is left on, to benchmarking consumption by sq footage, occupants or sales, and targeting efficiency measures where they’ll have the greatest impact.
  • Save time: no need for manual meter readings, saving time and effort for your personnel

AMR costs usually range from around £200 to £400 per meter, depending on the number being installed and ease (or not) of installation.

Turn data into intelligence

While most AMRs perform a similar function, the accompanying online data platforms do not, so make sure that your chosen software solution has the functionality, visualisation tools and ease of use to maximise your savings.

Without the ability to turn energy data into intelligence, the usefulness of AMRs decreases significantly, so make sure you and your site personnel are comfortable using  and interpreting the reports.