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      Energy efficiency tips to cut bills in the workplace

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      No matter what type of business you work for, it’s important to make every penny count to ensure your business is on the road to success. There are many costs that are unavoidable for all businesses – energy being one of them. Unfortunately it can also be the one that accounts for the biggest outgoing every year.

      Most businesses will talk about being more energy efficient but know that they could be doing more. But doing something about it when they are time poor and busy running their businesses means it often drops off the list of priorities or is delegated to other staff members. What many companies don’t realise however, is that there is an extensive range of financial and practical support out there to help them. One energy supplier making this a top priority is ScottishPower.

      Here’s some advice from ScottishPower on how you can help your business become more energy efficient.

      • Heat control
        Heating makes up 57% of an office energy bill, so it makes sense to tackle this first. Make sure your thermostats are set at an appropriate level and they are functioning correctly. For example, make sure they’re not exposed to direct sunlight or draughts. You should also make sure your heating and ventilation system is working only while your premises are open and not when your office is closed. Turn down your thermostat by just 1°C and you’ll cut your fuel bills by up to 10%. You’ll notice the saving, but not the drop in temperature. If you’re looking to monitor your savings or energy spend, the ScottishPower app is available to make submitting meter reads easier for you.
      • The right lighting
        Lighting is the second biggest user of energy in an office environment. Replacing your existing light bulbs with energy efficient LEDs can help save energy and costs. LEDs are ‘cool running’ and provide big energy savings of up to 90% compared to standard incandescent lighting. They also have a much longer life expectancy than conventional lighting, which means you’ll save further with reduced replacement costs, waste generation and maintenance. Making use of natural lighting where possible can also save money. Ensuring windows are cleaned regularly can allow extra daylight and heat to flow into the office, creating a healthier and more comfortable environment.
      • Don’t standby, switch off!
        Keeping equipment on standby costs the UK nearly £1 billion worth of energy each year. It might seem small, but turning off unused refrigerators and computer monitors or any other equipment can save energy. It might be wise to have a rota each day in your workplace and choose a member of staff to make sure lights and equipment are switched off. Turning down the brightness on your computer monitor can also save energy, as well as decreases eye strain and potential headaches.
      • Keep it clean
        Regularly clean and service office equipment such as computer filters to keep them free of dust and blockages so machines don’t have to work harder than they need to.
      • Minimise your waste
        Printing only when necessary can save energy and also help the environment. Try to use technology for meetings, communications, presentations and memos to save paper wastage. Set up a communal printer that is set up to print double-sided with a recycling bin next to it for waste paper.
      • Team effort
        Communication is the key to improving efficiency. Make sure everyone in the team is working towards a more energy efficient workplace. Having everyone in the team pull their weight can make a huge difference towards achieving your energy efficiency goals.

        A staff notice board could help engage staff with environmental issues and become a focal point for encouraging staff to make suggestions or pass on ‘top tips’ to improve their environmental performance, which can be transferred in the workplace or at home. Encourage friendly competition and reward staff for useful ideas.

      • ‘Green Town’
        Helping you use your energy more efficiently is ScottishPower’s priority. ScottishPower has teamed up with Resource Efficient Scotland, a programme of Zero Waste Scotland to look at your business’s resource efficiency as a whole. The online interactive programme called ‘Green Town’ identifies areas you can save energy specific to your industry and line of work. Visit HERE to find out more.
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      AUTHOR

      Molly Dyson

      Former Editor – PA Life

      All stories by: Molly Dyson