Checklist: 10 ways to save energy in the workplace

Most people don’t know how easy it is to run their businesses on less energy. Here are 10 easy tips to help you save energy and keep your energy bills down.

1. Make use of energy saving features

Most modern day equipment has energy saving features. When replacing old gadgets, make sure to do so with energy efficient peripherals.

Educate your employees with regard to these energy saving features for printers, microwaves, air conditioners, and allow them to use these to cut business energy costs.

2. Use energy-efficient light globes

Compared to traditional incandescent bulbs, compact fluorescent bulbs of the same brightness will save around £3 a year, or £45 over the lifetime of the product, according to the Energy Saving Trust.

Not only do these bulbs last longer, but also use about 75 per cent less energy than standard light bulbs.

3.Allow computers to hibernate

Turning off your workstations when away for long periods of time and shutting down at the end of the day are crucial in saving energy and lowering bills. When in sleep mode, your computer enters a low power state, but while hibernating it uses no power at all.

The hibernation feature on desktop computers and laptops allows you to save your existing work and continue from the same point next day.

4. Switch heaters and coolers off when not in use

Some ducted systems allow you to turn off the heating or cooling in rooms that are unoccupied. Remember to turn off heating or cooling in office spaces that are not being used and when leaving.

Keeping your business temperature one degree down during winters and one degree up during summers can reduce the power it uses by up to 10%.

5. Cut down on paper wastage

Printers in the workplace are often overused. Most of the time, work can be viewed on screen, rather than on printed-out paper.

Employees should be encouraged to print only when necessary. Not only does this reduce paper wastage, but it also helps cut energy required to run the printer, which in turn reduces energy costs and extends the lifespan of your printer.

6. Install a smart meter

Smart meters provide you with accurate information about your energy consumption. You’ll be able to identify and understand your energy use and know exactly what you’re paying for when your supplier sends you a bill.

 7. Allow employees to work remotely

If possible, allow employees to work from home on alternate days. Employees can still be in contact with those in the office and it’s also likely that they will get more work done at home without the distractions that often occur in the office environment.

Technology allows employees to have flexible work arrangements, and by having fewer employees in office, less lighting, cooling and running workstations would be required.

8. Always check the energy label

The EU Energy label, rates products from A (the most efficient) to G (the least efficient.

Products that are required to display this label include: washing machines, washer-dryers, tumble dryers, fridges, freezers, dishwashers, electric ovens, energy-saving light bulbs and air conditioners.

9. Switch off or unplug any equipment that is not in use

Laptop and phone chargers continue to use energy even when the device is not attached.

During weekends and holidays, make sure to switch off office equipment that is not in use. This includes printers, scanners, microwaves, lights, air conditioners, and coffee machines.

Gadgets and appliances that are not in use can account for 10% of your electricity bill.

10. Consider solar panels

Solar energy is free, renewable and clean. Although the initial cost of solar panels is expensive, the cost is recovered within a few years if used to its full strength.

Solar panels last longer and have fewer maintenance problems. This helps cut monthly business energy costs.

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