Energy saving tips for your business
Australian businesses are dedicating more and more of their budgets to electricity bills, with spending increasing by around 28 per cent a year in this sector.
Aussie companies used $2.6 billion worth of electricity in 2010-11, which is around 14 per cent of their overall budgets, according to the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE).
So, it's no wonder many of these businesses are looking to reduce their power consumption.
Here are some business energy saving tips to help your organisation lower its power bills.
Often businesses leave their office lights on overnight, which can have a big impact on their power bills.
Fortunately, it is easy to create savings in this area, by switching lights off when they aren't necessary, making the most of natural light where possible and opting for more efficient lighting choices.
If you plan on renovating office spaces in the near future, consider adding skylights or windows. These additions will not make your office heat up in the summer, but can provide an element of warmth during the winter months and mean you don't need so many lights on.
If you don't need the lights to work comfortably, turn them off. Even small savings can add up over time.
Another tip you can take is to replace your office bulbs with led lights. This could help you see savings, as these globes are around four to five times more efficient than the incandescent or halogen equivalents.
Whether it be computers, mobile phone chargers or printers, ensure these items are switched off when you are not using them.
Your company's electricity prices might drop if all your employees start switching off their computers, including the screens, when they leave for home at the end of the day.
If you are going to be away from your desk for more than 15 minutes, turn your screen off to save power, and see if you can encourage others to implement this behaviour.
Air conditioning units and temperature
These are big users of power, so make changes to help your business become more efficient.
If you elect to install an air conditioning unit in your office, make sure you choose one that best suits the space. Don't pick one that is too large or too small as these will be inefficient.
The Department of Industry recommend selecting a unit with 125 watts of capacity for every square metre of floor space.
Another way to cut down your power bills is to be careful around climate control. In the summer, it is best to stick to a temperature of 25 degrees, while in winter you should aim for 20 degrees.
An increase on these temperatures by one degree can use 15 per cent more energy in winter and 10 per cent more in summer, so it is best to limit the number of people with access to the thermostat.
Posted by Richard West.