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Five easy ways to boost energy efficiency

Five easy ways to boost energy efficiency

Five easy ways to boost energy efficiency

Improving energy efficiency is an important goal for many businesses, partly because it can lead to cost savings through lower bills, but also because it reduces the organisation's impact on the environment.

Cutting the amount of power your business consumes - and being more efficient with the energy you use - might seem like a big challenge, but there are a number of quick and easy changes that can make your enterprise greener and more responsible.

Here are five simple steps any firm should be able to take without too much disruption or difficulty:

Switch to energy-saving light bulbs

Replacing traditional, inefficient light bulbs with more eco-friendly versions such as LED bulbs is an easy change that can deliver big benefits.

According to energy comparison site UK Power, replacing just one ordinary light bulb with an energy-saving one could reduce lighting costs by up to £78 over the lifetime of the bulb. What's more, energy-saving bulbs last up to 12 times longer, saving you the time and inconvenience of changing them regularly.

Get efficient in the kitchen

The office kitchen can be one of the worst spots for energy wastage and inefficiency in the workplace.

Educate your employees on some of the positive habits they should be adopting in the kitchen, such as only putting as much water as they need in the kettle and making sure the dishwasher is completely full before turning it on. A 2013 study by the Energy Saving Trust (EST) found that three-quarters of British households overfilled their kettles, wasting a total of £68m each year. If this is happening in people's homes it is surely happening in offices too.

Turn down the heating by 1C

Making even the smallest change in heating levels - turning down the thermostat by a single degree, for example - could make a significant change in energy costs, especially for larger offices.

It's probably advisable to check with your employees first, but the chances are such a minor adjustment will largely go unnoticed in the workplace.

Make the most of simple tools

Improving energy efficiency doesn't have to be a major investment or a complicated project.

There are all sorts of simple, even old-fashioned measures you can introduce to get the most out of the energy you are paying for, such as reflector panels behind radiators that prevent heat from escaping by directing it back into the room, and basic draught-proofing around windows, doors and ceiling fittings.

Turn appliances off at the mains

Occasionally, office computers might have to be left on standby for software or security updates, but whenever possible they should be turned off at the main power outlet. Even in standby mode or when they are 'sleeping', computers can consume a lot of energy.

The same principle applies to televisions, radios and any other appliances you use in the office. Make sure all members of staff know that, if they are the last to leave, it is their responsibility to switch devices off at the plug socket.

And finally...

As well as looking internally when thinking about how to improve your energy efficiency and green standards, think about the external providers and service suppliers you are using.

Make sure that all partners - such as caterers, delivery firms and cleaning companies - adhere to certain standards of eco-friendliness and environmental performance.

There are many simple changes businesses can make to drive up their energy efficiency standards.

 

Posted by Julie Tucker

Image courtesy of iStock / Oliver Le Moal