Smart meter roll-out moved back

Smart Meter roll-out deadline delayed by four years until 2024

Smart meter technology allows energy users to monitor and measure real-time energy consumption without the need for a physical meter reading, saving time and helping to improve efficiencies.

Recognising the important role they play in saving energy consumption, the government’s ‘smart grid’ plan was for all Gas and Electricity suppliers to take steps to roll out smart meters to all their 1, 2 (domestic), 3 and 4 (Small business) class customers by 2020; however, this target has now been extended to 2024.

Why?

With 35 million homes still without a smart meter, it was felt that levels of customer service would be compromised if the scheme was rushed through.

Also, as time is no longer in such short supply, energy companies will also be less inclined to adopt aggressive techniques to try and encourage people to have smart meters fitted.

By dropping the date back to 2024, this allows time for fixing any meters that are already in use but suffer from poor connectivity and any other issues.

Rising costs

The government are working hard to make sure the cost to customers isn’t too high. Already, the cost of the roll-out has gone from 11 billion in 2016 to 13.5 billion today and this has been passed on to the customer through higher energy bills.

The consumer group, Citizens Advice, welcomed the decision as they acknowledge it has been done in the best interests of the customer.

 

Energy Management at The Restaurant and Takeaway Innovation Expo

On the 19–20th of November, the Restaurant & Takeaway Innovation Expo is taking place at the ExCel in London and we are delighted to be one of the 1,000 exhibitors; the only energy company at the show.

Energy Management LLP is one of the UK’s leading energy consultancies with a vast range of knowledge on the industry as well as priding ourselves on high levels of customer service.

The Restaurant and Takeaway Innovation Expo gives us a chance to share industry insights and divulge in the latest solutions in the utility sector.

Please come and visit us on stand F232 to discuss further what we have to offer you and your business.

With around 15,000 visitors a year, along with 500 seminars and 200 thought-provoking panel sessions, the event is supported by the biggest brands in the industry.

Tickets are FREE and available by clicking, here>>

Will Boris Johnson warm to the challenges around climate change and energy?

Energy Management’s Jac Stone says Boris Johnson must put climate change and energy at the top of his long ‘to-do list’.

Last week saw the arrival of Boris Johnson as Prime Minister, a Brexiteer hellbent on delivering the public vote and leaving the European Union on 31 October, 2019.

While the focus is on the here and the now as people contemplate just how the new man in charge of the country proposes to keep his promise in such a short space of time, his policies over the next few years – presuming he stays at No.10 – will be critical for the Energy Industry.

What next?

Although the UK has recently committed in law to reduced greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050, the route to achieve this is completely new territory. In order to meet this ambitious target, work needs to start immediately otherwise we’ll run the risk of missing  out. Couple this with the UK’s outdated energy policy and it’s obvious we cannot afford any delays.

Top of the tree for tasks to complete at Downing Street will be deciding whether to accept the recommendations made by the arrival of the Energy White Paper. The paper, due to arrive imminently, will set out a new framework designed to tackle pressing issues such as developing carbon capture projects, investment in renewable energy and funding of nuclear power stations. All contributing to the aim of meeting net-zero targets.

Making energy and climate change a priority, despite Brexit, would offer greater clarity and support across the whole of Britain. Businesses have already been hit by soaring non-commodity cost rises due to funding for government subsidies and these are projected to continue as the UK experiences its energy transition.

Boris’ Background

To say Johnson’s previous approach to climate change was sub-standard would be an understatement. As an MP he consistently voted against climate change measures and in December 2015, following the signing of the Paris Agreement, Johnson wrote a column for The Daily Telegraph praising the work of notorious climate science denier and brother of the Labour leader, Piers Corbyn, who he called a “great physicist and meteorologist”.

However, the new Prime Minister’s stance seems to have altered as of late. During his stint as Foreign Secretary, he said he would, ‘continue to lobby the U.S. at all levels to continue to take climate change extremely seriously’. He has also voiced his support for the net-zero 2050 target as well as discussing falls in the cost of renewable technologies – and its subsequent growth in the UK.

Where now?

It’s impossible to say where Boris Johnson will head with energy and climate change policy in the next few weeks and months. It will be vital that Brexit does not eclipse upcoming decisions which will be crucial to the net-zero 2050 target.

The new Prime Minister must maintain the momentum that has been building towards achieving the net-zero 2050 target and identify the pathway that will keep the U.K on track. Sufficient government support would ensure a swift and cost-effective transition for everyone.

Restore take up the Energy Management challenge

Leading document management services provider, Restore, is running an internal energy-saving competition after teaming up with Energy Management.

Energy is one of the largest controllable overheads in commercial buildings which means there are many opportunities to make savings.

As an environmentally friendly company keen to cut its energy bills, Restore PLC has teamed up with Energy Management to deliver a scheme which aims to reduce energy consumption across their entire UK operation.

Using some of the methods listed below, each of Restore’s 50 plus sites will compete against each other to see which one can achieve the largest drop in measurable consumption over a rolling three-month period.

Energy saving tips

  • Shutdown your computer out of office hours – you could save up to £50 a year per computer shut down
  • Be aware of your surroundings – if you think something needs to change, raise it with senior staff
  • Unplug idle electronics – it is estimated that energy consumed by idle electronics amounts to the annual output of 12 power stations
  • Use air conditioning sparingly
  • Turn off the lights when not in use
  • Only boil the water you need when making your team a cuppa

If your company would like to adopt a similar challenge or needs an energy audit conducting by a certified member of our team, please get in touch on 01225-867722

5 Things we learnt at Optimus Education’s Effective Financial Management in Schools Conference

Energy Management recently exhibited at Optimus Education’s Effective Financial Management in Schools Conference in London and a number of different energy-related themes were consistently brought up by visitors to our stand.

1. A holistic approach is key
Schools struggle to monitor their consumption across the board – water, electricity and gas – when dealing with multiple suppliers. As lots of schools are located across different sites, this can be problematic and confusing to anyone other than a skilled energy consultant.

2. Time poverty
Schools do not have time to procure energy effectively meaning they often get bad deals. We talked to representatives from schools who spent two days every three years procuring energy contracts; we do it 24/7, 365 days a year and pride ourselves in our ability to get the best price and best terms. Outsourcing procurement frees up time for schools to concentrate on their day-to-day core business activities.

3. Legislation minefield
We came across a few schools that were wrapped up in a minefield of red tape around compliance. Applying for VAT Decs was one specific problem identified by conference attendees. We have the skilled staff to sort out these headaches for you.

4. Energy efficiency issues
Becoming more energy efficient is a constant struggle for schools, especially older ones with Victorian-style heating systems and the lack of double-glazing. Opportunities to reduce consumption still exist though and a free energy efficiency health check workshop could help identify areas that work for you.

5. Positioning is everything!
We found schools were not constantly monitoring the energy market. Positioning yourself to be able to procure your energy at the correct time in the year is vital to cutting costs, whilst also enabling effective long-term budget management. Did you know you can secure your next renewal up to two years in advance?

Recognise any of the above issues? Working with Energy Management will not help your organisation become more energy efficient without any detriment to your output or the wellbeing of staff, but could also save you thousands of ££s.

To find out more about Optimus Education conferences, click here.

Receive a free energy health check

Free Business Energy Health Check

An Energy Management health check workshop will cost you nothing but could save you thousands of pounds.

A Senior Energy Management certified assessor will visit your organisation and present his/her ideas over the course of a morning or afternoon with the aim of highlighting energy efficiency projects that can be easily implemented with little or no capital expenditure.

Sky-high wholesale gas and electricity prices have placed even greater emphasis on organisations to become more energy efficient, especially those coming off energy contracts that were fixed when prices were comparatively low, so we would like to take this opportunity to share our knowledge and expertise in this area with you.

Energy efficiency may mean different things to many of us but for Energy Management LLP it means reducing energy consumption without compromising business throughput, output or thermal comfort and wellbeing of staff.

If you would like to hear how this can be achieved, please contact Nick Phillips on np@energymanagementltd.co.uk or call 07889-534290

Energy prices leaving you hot under the collar?

Energy efficiency may not be your bread and butter if you’re in the food and drink industry and why should it be?

But spiralling energy costs brought about by a range of geopolitical factors in 2018 make it a topic that is never far from the top of the agenda.

As the fourth highest industrial energy user in the UK, according to a report by the Carbon Trust, businesses in the food and drink industry are increasingly recognising the need to lower their energy bills, hedge against future volatility and adopt measures that help them comply with green energy legislation.

With analyst forecasts suggesting that Decarbonisation and other government social policies will account for the majority share of energy bills in the near future, compliance and energy efficiency will soon be of equal importance to procurement. The phrase ‘the cheapest unit of energy is the one you never use’ is well-liked at Energy Management LLP and for good reason.

For many organisations, time poverty means that managing the work required to reduce their energy consumption is an undesirable distraction from their core business activities. To further compound this, there may also be a lack of energy expertise and distinct skills gap creating barriers to finding savings and implementing reduction initiatives. This is where an expert reputable energy management consultancy can step in to remove these barriers and ease the way forward to effective reductions.

Energy efficiency may mean different things to many of us, for Energy Management LLP it means reducing energy consumption without compromising business throughput, output or thermal comfort and wellbeing of staff.

Energy drivers can be defined under one of the three core areas responsible for consumption; People, Process or Technology.

    • People– Human influences.
    • Process– Policies, procedures, protocols and regimes.
  • Technology– Energy consuming plant, machinery and equipment and their associated controls.

Energy Management LLP has the expertise to identify, qualify and quantify the opportunities in all three core areas

Invoice validation is also an area which can help reduce costs, did you know that one in five utility bills are wrong?

Discrepancies can occur on energy invoices, as they can on any type of bill, and, more often than not, such errors go unnoticed or unchallenged. Just like a customer of a restaurant wouldn’t leave without checking the bill was correct the same applies to your energy bill, this is when professional invoice validation can prove helpful, with the potential of saving you hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds.

Procurement of Energy is also an important factor to help you reduce your costs when choosing a supplier.

Simply by following “The five R’s”

    • Right price
    • Right time
    • Right type of contract
    • Right terms and conditions
  • Right duration of contract

Out-sourcing your energy management may seem like a big step but, with energy costs higher now than they have been for the past two years, we believe understanding and controlling these costs are vital to your business’s future success.

To continue making energy savings, businesses need to have a clear visibility of their energy consumption across the whole asset base thus leading to the ability to act. Bespoke energy management portals such as Energy Management’s EM-Powered allow this to happen, whether your business operates on one site or across multiple locations.

As the name suggests, the portal empowers energy managers to compile an instant overview of their organisation’s actual energy consumption, predicted energy consumption and peak loads in an easily downloadable report.

On gaining a complete understanding of your business’s energy performance, informed decisions can then be made on energy efficiency measures.

So, whilst energy efficiency might not be your bread and butter there are many things as a business you can do towards following a path of becoming more in control of your energy usage and being more efficient. With such a wide array of benefits on offer, beginning even a small review of your business is anything but a waste of energy.

If you would like further information please contact Billy Pryke at bp@energymanagementltd.com or visit https://www.energymanagementltd.com/contact-us/ to see how we can help your business.

Simple and effective ways to be more energy efficient

Free Business Energy Health Check

With Decarbonisation and other governmental social policies accounting for over half of energy bills, compliance and energy efficiency will soon be of equal importance to procurement. The phrase ‘the cheapest unit of energy is the one you never use’ is well-liked at Energy Management LLP and for good reason.

For many organisations, time poverty means that managing the work required to reduce their energy consumption is an undesirable distraction from their core business activities. To further compound this, there may also be a lack of energy expertise and distinct skills gap creating barriers to finding savings and implementing reduction initiatives. This is where an expert reputable energy management consultancy can step in to remove these barriers and ease the way forward to effective reductions.

Energy efficiency may mean different things to many of us, for Energy Management LLP it means reducing energy consumption without compromising business throughput, output or thermal comfort and wellbeing of staff.

Here are a few tips as to how you can make your organisation more energy efficient without breaking the bank or disrupting normal business practices.

Heating

Heating costs rise by 8% for every degree of overheating but there are a number of low-cost, low-disruption steps that can be taken to safeguard against this.

  • Maintain a good service and maintenance programme to ensure boilers and heaters are functioning as they should
  • Check thermostats are correctly set so your building is only being heated at the correct time
  • Close doors on leaving a room

Lighting

There are likely to be many actions you can take to improve lighting and achieve energy savings in your organisation.

  • Installation of LED lighting can make a significant difference to overall energy costs
  • Educate staff to turn off lights when they’re not needed
  • Fit timer devices or use occupancy sensors
  • Make the most of natural light coming into the building

Refrigeration

Refrigeration costs can make for chilling reading and, in some cases, account for over half the overall spend on electricity.

  • Ensure doors to refrigerated areas are kept closed
  • Check seals to refrigeration units are in good condition
  • Don’t overfill units as blocked air flow reduces efficiency
  • Upgrade old units

It is also worth supporting these measures by carrying out an energy audit, conducted by a fully certified energy assessor such as the ones provided by Energy Management.