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5 Ways Businesses Can Reduce Energy Consumption

5 Ways Businesses Can Reduce Energy Consumption

Whether you’re running a small business or a large manufacturing company, there’s no doubt you’ve felt the financial impact of the global energy crisis. Couple that with the consumer pressure and moral responsibility to ‘go green,’ and there are many reasons why reducing your business energy consumption should be at the top of your priority list. The larger your business, the more intensive this process can seem, but it’s a process you can’t afford to put off. Not only does reducing your business energy consumption lower your carbon emissions, but it also reduces your long-term running costs and positions your company as a more eco-conscious and mission-driven organization.

Taking action today is imperative to the continued growth and success of your business in the future, and it all starts with five primary steps. So, how can businesses reduce energy consumption? Here are our top five business energy-saving tips.

How can businesses reduce energy consumption?

While there’s an extensive list of ways that you can reduce energy consumption in business, focusing on these five main pillars is the best and most impactful place to start.

  • Monitor and adjust usage

When trying to reduce energy consumption in business, one of the simplest places to start is by proactively monitoring operations that require energy and adjusting usage accordingly. This doesn't need to be a huge undertaking or daunting task. Instead, start by watching water usage, implementing temperature control, taking advantage of natural light/natural airflow, using fans when possible instead of air conditioning and switching things off when not in use. While these may not seem like huge changes, compounded, they make a big impact on your energy usage. The first step here is an awareness that alternations need to be made to the way your business consumes energy. And from there, you can begin to make substantial changes to the way your business operates to reduce energy consumption.

  • Implement an energy management plan

In order to create long-term strategies for energy reduction, your business must implement an energy management plan. By assessing your current energy usage and identifying areas of improvement, you can create a strategic roadmap that will help you achieve your energy-saving goals. There are five main steps in the implementation process which includes:

  1. Auditing and measuring the current energy consumption of your business and benchmarking that against similar businesses or organizations to determine a baseline.

  2. Use the collected data to generate a detailed profile of energy usage. This will include a full breakdown in areas like lighting, heating/cooling, water, ventilation, equipment usage etc. This profile should also include the source of energy, and whether that's electricity, natural gas, oil, etc.

  3. Conduct an inventory of greenhouse gas emissions. This is essential so you can create emission reduction strategies and track progress towards reduced emission goals.

  4. Set energy reduction goals. Using the information gathered above, you can then create realistic short-term and long-term reduction goals which can be used when implementing improvement measures as part of your energy management plan.

From here, your business can develop a plan of action that will help your reach your sustainability and energy reduction targets.

5 Ways Businesses Can Reduce Energy Consumption

An example breakdown of energy usage in the manufacturing industry

  • Invest in energy-efficient equipment

Investing in energy-efficient equipment is essential for any business looking to reduce energy consumption. Since the beginning of 2021, natural gas prices have jumped by 250%. While most businesses use natural gas in some form, this is increasingly impactful for businesses that use natural gas to power industrial equipment. We have no control over market volatility, but we do have control over our energy usage. By simply updating outdated equipment with more energy-efficient options, such as a steam-generated boiler or variable speed drives on motors, businesses can reduce their energy consumption by up to 30%!

By investing in energy-efficient equipment, businesses can demonstrate their commitment to sustainability — something that consumers are increasingly looking for when they make purchasing decisions. So while updating all your outdated equipment may seem like a colossal expense in the short term, it can result in long-term savings and help businesses maintain a competitive edge in the growing eco-conscious marketplace.

  • Educate employees about energy conservation

One of the best ways that any business can reduce energy consumption without spending a dime is through education. Educate your employees on the importance of energy conservation and sustainable practices in all aspects of your business. Break down your employees' job duties and get specific on how they can reduce their energy usage at every touchpoint. This might be as simple as putting their computer on sleep mode when they walk away from their desk or switching off lights that aren’t in use.

Once you have an energy management plan in place, consider holding a business workshop and disclosing your sustainability goals and energy reduction plan to your employees. Get them involved in the process, recognize their role in your long-term development plan, and hold them accountable for doing their part.

  • Utilize renewable energy

While energy reduction will help to mitigate business energy expenses, the global energy crisis we find ourselves in is not going anywhere fast. As a society, we are heavily reliant on fossil fuels like natural gas, coal and oil. And as these resources become more scarce, the demand will continue to increase, and prices will continue to rise. Even if your business is using less energy, you can still expect to pay huge premiums. And that’s not even touching on the devastating impact fossil fuels have on our planet. That’s why you need to start looking at renewable energy options sooner for your business sooner rather than later.

Utilizing renewable energy sources like hydropower, wind, or solar helps businesses reduce greenhouse gas emissions, boost energy efficiency, lower energy bills, makes your business more employable and even provides marketing opportunities. NAB surveyed Australian business owners to see what sparked their shift to renewable energy resources, and the overwhelming majority said cost savings. And since the cost of investing in green energy initiatives will only continue to grow, so why wait?

5 Ways Businesses Can Reduce Energy Consumption

How reduction in business energy consumption impacts your bottom line?

Reducing energy consumption in business directly impacts your business's bottom line. Not only will lowering your consumption reduce your outgoings on energy bills, but it will also reduce your business's carbon footprint. By implementing an energy management plant, investing in energy-efficient equipment and technologies, and getting your employees on board with your mission, you can set your business up for success, regardless of how the energy market shifts in the future. The long-term savings you’ll amass as a direct result of your energy reductions can then be invested back into your business to drive growth in other areas.

Investing in renewable energy solutions showcases your business's commitment to sustainability. Customers are more likely to support businesses that are proactive about reducing energy consumption, and employees are more likely to stay motivated when their workplace is energy-efficient. Overall, reducing energy consumption in your business can have a huge impact on your bottom line in more ways than one. With the right investments and a commitment to sustainability, you can secure the future growth and success of your business.

And Green Interval is here to help.

We help businesses accelerate the reduction of energy consumption through our Green Interval Capability Framework. This streamlines the process and helps you implement solutions faster and more effectively. Get in touch to find out how we can help you become more sustainable today.

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