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Five ways for businesses to manage energy costs when the government bill relief reduces

How you can save money on energy bills to protect your finances and build a more sustainable future for your business

The Energy Bills Discount Scheme will replace the Energy Bill Relief Scheme on 1 April – providing a lower level of financial support for qualifying UK businesses, charities & public bodies. Unless energy prices fall, organisations are likely to face higher bills.

With continuing energy market volatility, the government is offering welcome protection through to 31 March 2024, including higher discounts for energy-intensive businesses. However, all organisations must take urgent action to drive down their energy costs and carbon emissions.

In this blog, we look at 5 proven methods to improve financial and environmental performance.

5 actions for fast energy and emissions savings

1. Use data to go further on energy efficiency

If you don't know exactly how, when and where you’re using energy across your estate, how can you identify opportunities to take your operational and energy efficiency much further? How can you drive down both energy costs and carbon emissions?

Our energy Insight wireless sensor technology is helping businesses to monitor energy usage in real-time – right down to device and equipment level. When this information is relayed to our PowerRadarTM  analysis platform, you can access the intelligence you need to develop a data-driven energy strategy.

  • Restaurant operator CMR decreased energy consumption by 7.5% – avoiding $1.2 million in unnecessary costs
  • Magna International is saving nearly $2 million on its annual energy bill, while improving operational efficiency & productivity
  • Marino College halved its energy consumption & carbon emissions by using energy insights technology to underpin its energy efficiency upgrade
  • CEMEX saved £211,383 by optimising energy intensive machinery
  • Pincroft cut weekend energy bills by 94% and weekday bills by 29%. Payback on investment took just 3 months
  • South Port NZ reduced capital expenditure by £430k and increased storage capacity at its 40-hectare commercial water port

2.  Reduce energy costs by up to 40% with CHP

Now is the perfect time to cut your energy costs & secure supply with hydrogen-ready Combined Heat and Power (CHP). At the current time, some of our customers are seeing a payback on investment within 1-2 years and reducing energy bills by as much as 40%.

High efficiency CHP is growing in popularity, as organisations seek to protect budgets from volatile energy markets and reduce their dependence on the grid.

Many customers are reinvesting CHP cost savings in sustainable energy projects with a longer return on investment – helping them to make a cost effective transition to net zero.

  • Our CHP partnership with a leading UK supermarket group is saving £1.28 million in annual energy costs, while Alton Towers has cut its energy bills by 12% 
  • London St George's Hospital is reducing energy costs by £1m per year and Whiston Hospital is cutting its yearly energy spend by £500k with our CHP led integrated energy efficiency upgrades
  • Accord Healthcare's Fawdon site is reducing electricity spend by 10%, but higher cost savings are forecasted at the end of our 5-year zero-cost capital & maintenance financing agreement


3. Lock into 30% solar energy cost savings

Installing a 100% renewable solar system at your site could shrink your energy bills by as much as 30%. Monetise spare space on rooftops or land by installing solar panels and benefit from immediate cost & carbon savings. If capital is tight, we can fund your project via a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).

  • Affinity Water will generate nearly 1MWp of renewable energy by installing solar panels at its Chertsey production site
  • We've installed more than 300 rooftop solar panels at Hereford County Hospital as part of our £4.7 million energy upgrade
  • We installed 4,248 solar panels at the British Army's Defence School of Transport. With four other solar projects, this is expected to achieve annual savings of £1 million
  • Our factory-connected solar PV system for Toyota is powering the company's European Model Sustainable Plant at Burnaston

    4.  Use finance & grants to invest in energy saving technology

    Although our customers can benefit from rapid payback on investment in CHP and solar, capital budgets are sometimes tight. We provide a wide range of flexible financing options, which often cover wider project costs, such as maintenance.

    Our Energy Services Agreements provide a coordinated package of funding for complex, multi-technology energy saving projects. Payment is agreed over a contract period – often with guaranteed savings.

    As approved suppliers to both industry and public sector grant programmes, as well as procurement frameworks, we support the accelerated delivery of approved projects within tight deadlines. We have vast experience of managing large, multi asset, estate-wide projects, with a proven history as delivery partners across the NHS and the wider public sector.

    5.  Optimise your energy flexibility to generate revenue

    Optimising your energy flexibility from onsite generation assets, such as CHP, solar and battery storage installations, is a great way to reduce costs and generate revenue through demand management and response measures.

    By load shifting energy usage to avoid peak power purchasing costs, some of our customers are increasing financial savings. They’re also generating flexibility revenues from Demand Side Response and other trading opportunities.

    • A new floating solar PV technological solution is enabling one of our greenhouse customers to monetise the surface area of their freshwater basin by reducing energy costs, selling solar-generated green electricity to the grid and accessing other demand side revenues.
    • Sustainable construction specialists LafargeHolcim group  is reducing energy spend with our demand side response solutions.
    Find out more in our new brochure on managing your energy costs

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