The Budget today gives little comfort for worried businesses and consumers as the Big Energy Debate gathers momentum.
George Osborne’s decision to freeze further increases in the Carbon Price Floor, introduced a year ago could cut up to £15 a year from domestic energy bills. Every little helps but this move is hardly likely to prompt businesses, organisations and households to hang out the bunting.
In the absence of radical, inclusive action on energy, we’ve outlined below some simple, cost-effective ways that companies, organisations and consumers can really make a big difference to their utility bills and carbon footprint.
We think it’s crucial for every energy consumer to think hard and take action now to cut consumption simply because we’re about to steer into a perfect storm. As the Guardian’s Big Energy Debate advises, we’re facing an “Energy Trilemma”.
This is an idea floated in 2012 by the World Energy Council to draw attention to the global challenges of secure energy supplies, coping with rising demand and managing prices while at the same time addressing the environmental imperative to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
As we’ve all experienced, the price element of the energy trilemma has been painful, with energy bills doubling in a decade – nearly 40% rises over the past three years alone. The Carbon Tax freeze will hardly scratch the surface of rises in the next ten years and we can expect our energy bills to double again.
Not surprising, then, that a BBC survey today shows energy bills are the biggest worry for households. Businesses too are deeply concerned about rising utility prices, as well as security of energy supply.
While there is scant effective action from Government on prices, the Carbon Tax freeze is likely to have a significant effect on another element of the energy trilemma as the commercial incentive to invest in renewable energy sources declines. And this is at a time when greenhouse gas emissions are on the increase yet again after years of shrinkage.
Our practical steps to save energy and water can help to head off the perfect storm. They have immediate and positive effect on energy and water consumption, which naturally cut utility bills while at the same time reducing carbon emissions.
Action at home
We focus on two effective actions that have little or no support through national programmes like the spluttering Green Deal – lighting and water savings.
We feel that the best long-term solution in low-energy lighting is LED technology. It’s superior in every way to other low-energy options, from exceptionally long lifespan to near zero maintenance and better quality of light.
LED lighting is by any measure the clear choice when replacing traditional incandescent bulbs (now barred by EU regulations), halogen lighting, tubes, capsules and floodlights.
Depending on the setting, LED lighting delivers up to 90% energy savings, which means that payback is pretty quick – and you go on saving money year after year. In a typical household, LED solutions will last for a decade or more. Just fit and forget.
LED technologies provide a wide range of lighting quality and colour. They emit very little heat and maintain the lighting effect over their long life, unlike other low-energy options such as CFLs – the curly wurlies are gloomy when first switched on but also lose much of the light quality as they age.
Call us on 0333 123 5464 for expert help on your LED lighting needs.
Fluid energy solutions
The second part of our double whammy in energy saving is water efficiency. This delivers two benefits for households: cutting consumption reduces energy use needed to heat water and as millions more consumers are moved to water metering, they can control their costs.
Simple solutions like installing a quality eco shower head will cut water consumption by more than 50%. We recommend the hansgrohe EcoSmart range, which uses sophisticated flow limitation and special spray jets to reduce flow, blendingthree litres of air for every one litre of water. What’s more EcoSmart technology ensures no perceivable loss of pressure or showering pleasure.
Add to this substantial water and energy saving winner by fitting EcoSmart taps, which reduce consumption by 60% to help lower bills even further. And you can round off the water savings strategy by installing tap aerators to most current models – check here to find out whether a tap aerator will fit.
Our expert team can help you with your water-saving choices – call 0333 123 5464.
Action at work
For every organisation and business, the case for LED lighting is compelling. Retrofitting LED technology makes perfect commercial sense as our many customers have found. Whether you need energy-efficient lighting in your hotel, office, restaurant, care home, leisure facility, showroom, car park, hospital or school, we have the best ways to cut your lighting energy bills by up to 90%.
We also think that intelligent lighting controls are a very smart way to manage energy consumption in the widest range of environments by 60% or more.
Find out how you can take control of spiralling energy bills – talk to our expert team on 0333 123 5464.
All companies and organisations will also benefit from a water-efficiency programme, particularly those in intense-use environments like hotels and bed & breakfasts, restaurants, care homes and hospitals. Choosing the best fittings like hansgrohe EcoSmart shower heads, EcoSmart taps and tap aerators will not only cut bills but also reduce carbon footprint.
For 24/7 operations like hotels, HVAC controls are a proven way to reduce energy costs. Read our Radisson Blu Cardiff Hotel case study, which shows how this busy hotel saved up to 45% in energy costs.
Intelligent controls extend business energy savings with heat pump management through variable speed drives. Watch this video to find out more.
Businesses can round off their energy-saving strategy with better boiler management, using boiler-efficiency technology that delivers up to 18% savings in fuel consumption
While the Budget 2014 scores low on energy strategy, companies, organisations and consumers can offset that with effective action to cut consumption cut bills and cut carbon footprint. We’re here to help – call 0333 123 5464 and start saving now.