Thu 6th Mar 2014
Firms urged to get ‘energised’
Businesses must look at ways to reduce their energy consumption if they are to remain competitive – that was the message delivered this morning by one of the UK’s leading business energy and water consultancies at an event hosted by Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry in partnership with UtilityWise.
Over 100 local businesses gathered at Belfast Metropolitan College’s e3 Innovation Centre for ‘The Business Case for Renewables’, one of 3,000 events taking place across the UK as part of Climate Week. The event featured a number of high-profile speakers within the energy sector including John Toner, Managing Director of Williams Industrial Services (WIS); Neil Collins, Managing Director of Glen Dimplex and Adrian Lyon, General Manager at The Workspace Group.
Advice was also provided by a number of local companies including Blackbourne, Balcas and Solmatix.
Malcolm Emery, Business Development Manager Ireland at UtilityWise, said:
“Good energy management is becoming a business essential, the increasingly complex market means that energy prices are unlikely to drop.
“Businesses must now look for ways to reduce their energy consumption and lower their bills to compete within the market. Recognising that true cost savings come from reducing energy consumption, many businesses are opting to install monitoring and management products. These include AMR meters; web-based meter reporting tools; water bill audits; energy awareness training for staff; circuit-level power monitoring and on-site Energy Audits.
“We would encourage members to have an energy audit carried out on their business premises and business processes immediately, in order to find out exactly where energy is being wasted and then implement improvements.”
John Toner, Group Chairman & CEO of WIS Group and Board member of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said:
“In the last 4 years, UK wholesale energy prices have doubled, halved and doubled again. Energy costs are an increasingly significant element of a businesses’ cost-base with global indicators suggest that costs are only going to increase over the coming years.
“Whilst we cannot accept this, and must continue to work with government to address the issue, there are things that businesses can do in the meantime in order to reduce costs.
“Financial support for sustainable energy initiatives such as the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) and interest free loans can help drive down costs. Businesses can also work with utility brokers, such as Utilitywise, who price around the market for businesses, analysing energy bills, preparing like for like price comparisons and helping you secure the best deal for your business. To paraphrase the 19th century physicist Lord Kelvin said – If you can’t measure it – then you can’t understand or indeed control it.”