Controlling your energy costs

With a host of geopolitical issues around the world pushing the cost of Brent Crude Oil to an eye-watering $80 a barrel, these are challenging times for energy users.

As the graph to the right so clearly demonstrates, the knock-on effect is a dramatic rise in the cost of gas (and electricity), which often accounts for a company’s second-biggest overhead behind staff wages.

Prices are on the up across the board and the likelihood is that this situation will not change anytime soon unless someone finds an overnight magic formula for ending long-running disputes in the Middle East and beyond.

Uncertain times

While energy price markets are complex and unpredictable at the best of times, the lack of certainty at present makes for a testing environment for even the most proficient and experienced market analysts.

No-one at Energy Management would claim to know what the future has in store (a pay rise would be theirs for the taking if they did), but we believe in the adage that to be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Our market monitoring systems provide a safety net for customers potentially vulnerable to sharp price hikes, with alarm mechanisms being triggered once prices reach levels at kilter with historical data. Dedicated key account managers then contact their respective clients and advise them accordingly about the range of procurement possibilities.

Be proactive

Adopting a proactive stance in energy procurement is vital in negating the impact of an increasingly bullish market; leave contract renewals to the last minute and you run the risk of being held to ransom by energy suppliers or face punitive charges for going out of contract.

Externally managed energy contracts enable clients to press on with their own business development safe in the knowledge that the management of their energy needs is being looked after by a safe pair of hands.

If you would like to discuss managed energy contracts, please feel to contact us on 01225-867722.

Achieving Efficiencies

We’re pleased to be exhibiting at the Achieving Efficiencies in Schools and MATS Conference in London today, where we will be sharing information on how academic organisations can reduce their energy spend by utilising the services of a renowned energy consultancy such as ours.

By offering the complete energy management solution, from energy procurement through to invoice validation and smart meter management, we can deliver significant savings and help Schools and MATS in their budget management.

While we are skilled to tackle large-scale projects, there are simple ways in which those in charge of Schools and MATS can keep their energy costs in check on a daily basis.

  • Educate your students: Getting pupils on board is essential to reducing your carbon footprint. Buy-in from them makes cultural change so much easier. Why not arrange a visit from one of our engineers to discuss simple energy-saving techniques?
  • Power down personal devices: Unplugging one smartphone may not seem that big a deal but across a whole school flicking power switches to ‘off” – or banning recharging altogether – could make a notable difference over the school year.
  • Turn off the lights in unused classrooms: An obvious one but nonetheless important especially if LED lights have yet to be installed.
  • Unplug when done: Make sure overhead projectors and other devices such as laptops are unplugged once a presentation is finished. Many of them use small amounts of energy if left on. It all adds up!
  • Time management: With many schools occupying a large geographical footprint it is sometimes easy for people to remember to physically switch off lights themselves. As some far-flung classrooms might only be used on an occasional basis, this could result in lights being left on for hours at a time when there is no need. Use of electric timer outlets can address this.
  • Keep doors closed: Energy consumption in schools can vary depending on the age of the buildings, their state of repair,
    occupancy hours and the amount and type of electrical equipment installed, but one thing is pretty constant across most classrooms – they have doors. Keeping them shut helps to ensure that learning space remains warmer for longer and leads to a reduction in HVAC energy consumption.