NECAQ Sustainability Program The Business Case

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1 NECAQ Sustainability Program The Business Case Key messages Energy efficiency is a fundamental element in the progression towards a future low-carbon economy. Actions to increase energy efficiency can make a significant impact in squaring the circle between an increased demand for energy and environmental protection and ensuring a move towards a more sustainable energy future. Improvements in energy efficiency have played a key role in limiting global increases in energy consumption of resources and greenhouse gas emissions over the past three decades, while maintaining the quality of the energy service. However, considering future trends in world energy use, increasing concerns about access to energy and energy security, significant challenges need to be addressed, for which energy efficiency will be part of the solution. There is a strong business case for energy efficiency - it enables companies to save costs, improve their competitiveness and overall productivity. Moreover there are also opportunities to develop new businesses that enhance efficiency. However, several barriers remain to energy efficiency improvements. In order to overcome these barriers we need to create an environment that rewards energyefficient choices and encourages innovation. Reinforcing the market for energy efficiency through innovative mechanisms, such as standards, labels, public-private partnerships and energy performance contracting, may lead to increased certainty and demand for energy efficiency which will foster private sector initiatives. The buildings and residential/commercial energy-using equipment sectors in particular has a high potential for large cost-effective energy savings. The sharing of information on energy efficiency tools and best practices, are critical for enhancing energy efficiency improvements. Individual firms and companies whose business is the selling, installation, servicing and repair of electrical and communications products and services should develop new approaches in order to fully exploit opportunities for increased energy efficiency, especially by awareness of energy consumption and savings in the long term, as well as planning and implementing actions such as demand side management 1 NECAQ Sustainability Program

2 What is the business case for energy efficiency? Energy efficiency measures provide a win-win situation by promoting cost-savings, lowering environmental impacts while at the same time promoting economic growth and social development. In addition to generating annual energy savings, present outlays on energy efficiency would avoid investment in energy infrastructure that would otherwise be needed to keep pace with accelerating demand. Energy efficiency makes sense to business for a range of compelling reasons as it: reduces costs by saving on the utilisation of resources; reduces dependency and increases security of supply; creates increased opportunities for new, energy-efficient technologies; reduces greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental impacts; makes energy more affordable to consumers by reducing use and the overall need for investments in energy supplies; creates jobs in supplying energy-efficient technologies and practices; improves competitiveness and overall productivity. There are benefits of investing in energy efficiency. As suppliers and consumers of energy individual firms and companies whose business is the selling, installation, servicing and repair of electrical and communications products and services strongly support and pursue economic approaches to energy efficiency. However at the moment they are not recognising the scale of these potential benefits from a sustainable business perspective, how straight forward a more efficient approach to energy management would be to implement and how the changing economic and legislative landscape makes early adoption a genuine means of competitive advantage. Challenges to energy efficiency improvements A range of barriers exist to the greater deployment and adoption of enhanced energy efficiency measures. For example, information barriers, market imperfections and policy distortions impede consumers and businesses from taking opportunities to invest in energy efficiency. Information barriers Consumers often lack the information they need to become more energy productive, and tend to make choices based on non-financial factors. It is particularly difficult to learn about the performance and costs of energy-efficient technologies and practices, because their benefits are not directly observable. For example, there is insufficient feedback to consumers on their energy use and on the potential impact of their efficiency investments. Among businesses, the small and fragmented nature of energy costs in most operations tends to deter businesses from capturing the full potential available. Electricians providing information to customers also need to be better informed. Management obstacles Within business energy efficiency investments often tend to be classified as discretionary maintenance projects. They are usually given a lower priority to essential maintenance projects or strategic investments. Generally management has historically not considered energy-cost savings as a strategic priority in comparison to large, strategic projects. Helping decision makers recognise the business case and benefits for investing in energy efficiency is a major challenge. Over the next few years, as new regulation is introduced and businesses try to make every cent count, it will be vital for energy and sustainability 2 NECAQ Sustainability Program

3 managers to help transform the attitude of their organisations. This will ensure they realise the opportunities to make significant savings to their overheads through tighter management of their energy use. Building the Business Case Justifying the business case can be difficult compared to initiatives that deliver more direct and quantifiable benefits. In developing the business case for, it is more important than ever to: link to existing business drivers for example, meeting compliance requirements; build on the success that has already been achieved through energy efficiency projects; and promote the benefits of energy efficiency in the context of rising energy prices. The business case needs to be developed around support, guidance and a flexible framework to encourage and enable a responsible attitude to the protection of the environment. We need to enhance environmental awareness by motivating employees and customers and foster a philosophy of environmental responsibility in all aspects of services and products. In developing the business case there needs to be efforts to; Increase environmental knowledge for employers and employees to motivate them to behave in an environmentally responsible way and give management the capabilities to make these aspirations occur; Give the customers the information they need to make sound environmental decisions; Share information which may be appropriate to stakeholders and clients; Review environmental strategy in order to maintain a positive viewpoint; Learn from tactics employed by other companies; Integrate environmental awareness in planning, marketing, employee communications and training; Monitor on a continual bases; Ensure a good level of awareness in preventing and reducing unnecessary pollution; Identifying and managing excessive energy consumption through effective Energy Management Services and solutions i.e., o Energy audits; o Power analysis and data logging; o Electricity tariff selection; o On-going energy monitoring; o Energy management systems; o Energy saving timers and movement sensors; o Lighting efficiency analysis and upgrades; These priorities can be developed around the activities outlined below. 3 NECAQ Sustainability Program

4 Building energy efficiency into `business as usual Best Practice Customers - How to Save Money Building the Business Case Energy Efficiency Training Programs Promote energy saving installations and enviiromentally friendly electrical products 1. Consumers - Energy Savings Advice Electricians and contractors that are professionally trained in energy efficient products, technologies and installations are capable in assisting customers in reducing their energy usage, saving them money and playing their role in helping the environment. With the current demand for electricity growing at an alarming rate of 4% per annum nationally and energy costs forecasted only to rise the need for reducing energy consumption is becoming a financially necessity as well as a green, environmentally conscious choice. Energy efficiency is the simplest and easiest way to reduce costs and make a real and meaningful difference. Saving energy is about saving money energy efficiency is about doing more with less. As energy prices start to increase, energy efficiency plays a significant role in reducing or avoiding increased costs. Market research has shown that people do believe and understand these real threats but do not know where to start or more importantly - who to trust. This can give electricians a real point of difference out there in the market place making them more competitive and more appealing to potential and existing clients. They need to be able to assess and offer advice on efficiency ensuring cost savings, lower energy costs and less green house gas emissions. Electricians can add value to their service by: Saving their customers money Offering their customer's informed choices Reducing their customers energy requirements and usage Helping their customers reduce their carbon footprint Reducing our negative impact on the environment 2. Promoting energy saving installations and environmentally friendly electrical products - Energy Savings Solutions Electricians need to be able to identify, calculate and recommend the energy efficient choices available to consumers - helping them reduce their carbon footprint. The Carbon 4 NECAQ Sustainability Program

5 Pollution Emissions Scheme's Green paper recognized that there are 4 major household emissions efficient opportunities: Insulation Hot water heating Lighting Appliance consumption There is a need to develop a broad understanding of the concepts of energy efficiency utilizing modern technology and products to be able to; provide home power assessments and power savings advice to help households save up to 20% of their energy use every year. provide advice to help small- and medium-sized businesses cut energy use, saving the average small business on electricity bills. support businesses and households identify and implement energy savings. This can cut energy use in these businesses by at least 10%. provide practical advice on saving energy at home and work.. There are a number of ways that electricians can assist their clients reduce their energy use and emissions, particularly in the areas of; Sensors; Energy efficient lighting - recommending energy efficient lighting throughout homes and businesses, ensuring safety for your client, reducing energy use and saving them money and achieving a high level of energy efficiency in high usage areas; Heating and Cooling Appliance advice providing advise on the most efficient and cost effective option for your clients specific needs; Solar energy generation being able to assess and advise the best solution for clients; Solar Hot Water Systems - being able to assess and advise the best solar solution for your clients Pumps, Fans and Motors - over 50% of an organization's energy costs can be in the running of pumps, fans and motors need to assess and offer advice to improve system reliability and efficiency. This advice will provide the client with cost savings, higher profits, lower energy costs and less green house gas emissions. In addition they need to identify opportunities for organisations to save energy including opportunities where technology can be used for upgrades and retrofits, improved maintenance procedures or staff behavioural changes. Benefits of such approaches can include; Energy and cost savings; Specialist energy advice and technical support; Help to measure and understand energy use; Assistance with project implementation; Opportunities to network and share energy efficiency ideas; and Opportunity to link energy audits with a star rating of the environmental performance of existing buildings. This needs to be supported by a system that adds strength and credibility to the services and business for contractors. It needs to recognise them and enables them to promote their knowledge and training as a unique selling point to their customers - including access to; Branding and marketing material to enable them to promote their knowledge of energy efficient installations and products to your customers; 5 NECAQ Sustainability Program

6 On-going technical information and support; Advertising support; Access to industry experts, providing up-to-date technical and marketing advice and support; Access to complimentary courses. 3. Building energy efficiency and good environmental performance into business as usual Individual firms and companies need to understand that good environmental performance reduces risk, lowers costs, improves productivity and enhances reputation. They need to make sense of all the noise about sustainability, pinpoint how their business can benefit and provide a clear path for action. Rather than creating extra work, they can focus their efforts to deliver the best results for their company and for the environment by reducing energy usage, making the shift to a low carbon economy and doing their bit for the environment. This will include; Managing environmental risk and ensuring compliance; Using resources more efficiently; Integrating environmental strategies with business planning; Measuring their carbon footprint and manage their emissions; Enhancing supplier and community relationships; and Engaging and training staff to become an employer of choice. Management diagnostics need to evaluate their current environmental performance and rank possible initiatives and work on tailored, flexible projects including: Vision, Commitment and Planning - develop a sustainability road map, including goals and the plans to deliver them. Environmental Risk and Responsibility - undertake risk assessment, education and training to help ensure compliance with environmental law. Resource Efficiency - reduce waste and use less raw materials, energy and water to improve your bottom line. Supply Chain Management - work with key suppliers and customers to get the best environmental results from products and services. Staff Engagement - engage and train your staff to implement your sustainability plans and enhance employee and client retention; Climate Change - identify risks and opportunities, and develop a greenhouse gas inventory. 4. Promoting Energy Efficiency Training Programs Electricians and contractors need to gain the knowledge, the skills, and the confidence to become an energy efficient expert and provide advice on eco-friendly solutions for client's premises. We need to teach electricians and contractors alike to look for the energy efficient option with every installation, job, and project and provide access to a wealth of information and tools to assist them in building their business and promoting the energy efficient solutions the business is able to provide. Business owners, managers and employees who understand how to reduce carbon emissions and use energy more efficiently will help businesses save money and power, lower resource costs and improve sustainability Energy Efficiency Training Programs will build the knowledge and skills of electricians and contractors to support improved energy efficiency practices, products and services. Targeted energy efficiency training also has the potential to stimulate new green jobs and 6 NECAQ Sustainability Program

7 add green skills to existing jobs by supporting innovation, workforce development and sustainable business growth. A low carbon economy demands new skills. Energy Efficiency programs will involve: training managers and other staff to make business operations, products or services more energy efficient and less carbon intensive; customising or developing specific courses that are practical and effective for staff and businesses; measuring the benefits of the training to staff and businesses; sharing the results and benefits of the training with other organisations; customise and deliver existing energy efficiency courses to meet specific industry needs and measure the benefits; and develop and test new courses and training in partnership between industry and trainers. 5. Promoting Best Practice We need to promote projects and initiatives where the design, product selection, lighting, processes or technologies have created an energy efficient or sustainable installation and/or made a significant contribution to preservation of a site s natural environment. Best practice studies that provide details of new products, in-house design applications or processes and/or the use of new emerging technologies and the application of trade experience, knowledge and skills beyond mere compliance need to be widely promoted. This could include; In-house design aspects that set projects apart from client or engineer supplied design. Difficulties (e.g. site access, environmental, client requirements, design requirements) and how they can be overcome (e.g. through planning, application of knowledge, project management or technical innovation); The development of new products, applications or processes and/or new and emerging technologies or innovative alternatives (e.g. features, practice or supplies to save time, money or create a more aesthetically appealing or better result using alternative methods for installation); Commercial potential of the energy efficiency measures employed, including buildability, adaptability and the potential for market uptake; Cost effectiveness of energy efficiency measures employed; Reduction of excessive use of energy and/or greenhouse gas emissions; and Energy savings made by clients. 7 NECAQ Sustainability Program

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