Energy wasted equals dollars lost.
Establishing an energy team at your business (or educate your family to do at your home) to be responsible for developing projects and pushing an energy efficiency agenda can ensure that your company’s stated energy-savings goals become a reality. At each meeting, the team identifies new projects and assigns each member a task. Tasks may include investigating grants and rebates for energy saving projects, estimating potential energy savings, getting bids from contractors, or investigating new technologies. It is very important to fund their projects from the energy saving. For example if a lighting project saves 150$ a month that should be given to the Energy Team to fund future energy saving projects and thus you create a way to increasingly fund bigger and more expensive projects.
- Establish a Team and maybe give it a cool name like Energy Heroes
- Get Educated about energy savings https://energy.gov/energysaver/energy-saver
- Review Company Energy Costs with Team to establish a baseline
- Do an energy survey to list what uses energy
- Walk Through with Fresh Eyes approach.
- Determine Energy Savings opportunities
- Evaluate options
- Perform ROI (return on investment) Analysis
- Implement Projects
- Repeat as desired
The Bottom Line
Increasing energy costs coupled with economic downturn have forced business owners to do more with less. These days, smart business means efficient business—and energy is one of the few areas where you can cut costs without sacrificing customer service or product integrity. The tips presented here will be appropriate for almost any type of building and are a great place to start.
Some ideas of Energy Reduction that were implemented at one location:
- Solartube (tubular skylight) natural day lighting
- Under desk floor heating pad for the “cold” person in the office
- New installation of air compressors
- Lighting upgrade from Metal Halide to T8 fluorescent
- Multiple air leak studies
- Duct work sealing
- Interior lighting upgrade from T8 fluorescent to LEDs
- Create a vestibule/air lock for entering/leaving different temperature zones
- Plan to shift work schedule to not use peak electricity
The manager was discussing the many benefits of a recently completed “energy efficiency” upgrade at his manufacturing plant. Notably absence from the manager’s comments were any mention of saving energy or lower utility bills.
The value of the benefits the manager described (dramatically less noise, zero loss of production, reduced maintenance, etc.) had nothing to do with energy and appeared to be far more noteworthy. These added benefits were so significant saving energy had become relatively unimportant to the client and not worth mentioning!
Aur ‘DaEnergyMon’, is a NABCEP Certified Solar PV Installer™ with AES Solar in Carterville and started educating himself about renewable energy as a teenager even before (at age 15) he moved into a camper in his parents driveway to live off grid solar and ended up living off grid for 18 years. Aur understands that living how he does makes it very easy to advocate for a life of simpler living, energy efficiency and renewable energy. His name Aur (pronounced “or”) means light or to enlighten in Hebrew. Can be reached at tech@AESsolar.com