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What is energy resilience?

Energy resilience is about ensuring a business has a reliable, regular supply of energy and contingency measures in place in the event of a power failure.

Causes of resilience issues include power surges, weather, natural disasters, accidents and even equipment failure. Human operational error can also be an issue and should be factored into resilience planning.

As the energy landscape undergoes a radical transformation; from a world of large centralized coal plants, to a decentralized energy world made up of small-scale gas-fired production and renewables, the stability of electricity supply will really begin to affect energy pricing. It’s imperative that businesses plan for this change.

The challenges that the growth of renewables bring to the grid in terms of intermittency, means that transmission and distribution costs are set to consume an increasing proportion of bills.

Ensuring your business is energy resilient helps insulate against price increases or fluctuations in supply, becoming critical to maintaining operations and reducing commercial risk.

For sectors such as manufacturing, healthcare, assisted living and education, any issue surrounding unstable or failing energy supplies will affect operations, making resilience business-critical especially when people’s lives could be at stake. Consider a food manufacturer that experiences a power failure. Their food could be exposed to temperatures outside standard guidelines. If that food makes it to the shelves of the grocery store, only to be recalled later, think of the negative brand implications this could have on their company. Surely the cost of implementing energy resilience would outweigh the loss of Sales the brand would experience in this scenario.  

What can you do to make sure your business is taking steps toward becoming energy resilient? The first step to being energy resilient involves identifying and assessing the risks. The next steps involve building in resilience where possible. This can vary widely by industry but it can be done by reducing reliance on the grid or generating on-site power (full time or as a back-up). Depending on your predicted cost of loss of power, you can make a financial decision on the scale of what you need to invest. Lastly, putting a plan in place and making sure the proper functions are trained on executing the plan is critical should the worst happen.

In conclusion, by taking charge of your business’ energy resilience strategy, your organization can mitigate threats, avoid disruption and keep ahead of the competition.

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