Green Energy Solutions for Small Business
It isn’t always easy to get your head around all the green energy solutions out there on the market. From green energy contracts to smart technology to basic energy efficiency changes, it’s hard to know where to start. Fortunately, we’re here to help.
Just a few years ago, green business energy contracts were not common. Now, it’s a different story. More and more businesses want to do their bit for the environment – because their customers are demanding it.
Green energy has also become more available. The National Grid has made substantial infrastructure improvements and the UK is now using more renewable energy than at any point in the past. That renewable energy comes from the UK’s own wind and solar farms. It also comes from Europe, thanks to the interconnectors between the UK and the continent.
Increased demand and increased supply have successfully driven down prices. Businesses with green energy contracts no longer pay a premium for their energy.
Now, there are a number of green energy suppliers operating in the UK. Every single energy contract they sell is green. Suppliers like Ørsted build and operate windfarms and then supply that renewable energy to business customers in the UK. Even the Big Six energy suppliers are getting in on the game, with at least three of them offering contracts that boast 100% renewable energy.
There are lots of different smart technologies available on the market now, and they can all help you save energy. For example, we recently took a look at the pros and cons of a smart thermostat in your small business. A smart thermostat can help you save energy (and money) in your business by helping you to regulate and monitor your heating, 24/7.
Beyond thermostats, there are a wide range of smart technologies that can help you save money in your business, including things like smart lightbulbs and motion sensors.
Motion sensors are particularly useful for businesses. These sensors detect motion and turn lights on and off automatically in response to your presence. Instead of keeping lights on all day with a single, traditional switch, your lighting can function on demand. Some sensors also detect natural light levels and adjust their brightness to match, helping you to save even more energy.
Updating your lighting systems is often one of the quickest ways to save energy in your business. These projects usually have the shortest payback periods, too.
Energy Efficiency Improvements
There are plenty of other ways to save energy at work, even if you can’t invest in smart technology and it isn’t time to switch your energy contract. Making small, practical changes can have a big impact on your bills, and they are a great way to get started when it comes to energy efficiency.
CHECK TO MAKE SURE THAT YOUR RADIATORS AREN’T BLOCKED BY OFFICE FURNITURE.
If they are, it’s time to rearrange your office. Keeping your radiators free of obstruction allows heat to flow around the room more efficiently, allowing you to turn down your thermostat.
CLEAN YOUR WINDOWS TO MAKE THE MOST OF NATURAL LIGHT.
We all dust the shelves and hoover the floors, but when was the last time you washed the windows and cleaned the lights? Maximise your natural light to reduce your reliance on artificial lighting and keep lights turned off for longer.
TURN THE HEATING OFF IN SPACES THAT AREN’T USED REGULARLY.
Restrooms, corridors, and kitchens aren’t occupied for hours every day, so turn the radiators down or even turn them off to save money.
How to Prioritise:
Once you know what kind of green energy solutions are available to your business, you need to prioritise. Here’s how to tackle it:
1. Find out when your business energy contract will end and start looking for a new green energy contract three to six months before that date. It might mean switching to a new business energy supplier. Switching is simple and doesn’t cost you anything – in fact, it will often help you save money.
2. Analyse your business and identify all the ways you can be more energy efficient without investing in smart technologies. Then put them into practice.
3. Look at what kind of smart technologies are available on the market. Can they help your business be more efficient? This is also the time to find out if there are any grants or funding for small businesses trying to be more energy efficient. It’s always worth checking with your business energy supplier, as some of them may be able to help.
Making a few simple changes now can help you make some serious long-term energy savings, and that’s something to take seriously as we face up to the tough times ahead.