How To Save Energy In The Workplace?

We are constantly busy in the workplace meeting the tasks in hand but have you ever stopped to think how much energy is actually being consumed within your business?

Saving power can be one of the simplest ways of improving the profitability of your business. You can make quick power saving changes across your business that will reduce your energy bills and conserve energy.

Interesting that according to the Carbon Trust many businesses could save at least 20% of their energy bills by using office equipment more efficiently and changing employees’ behavior towards energy use. They also assert that a 20% cut in energy use would equate to the same benefit as a 5% increase in sales in many businesses.

Carbon Trust also have a section on their website which makes employees aware of office energy efficiency.

We thought we’d share with you some tips on how to save energy around you and being more sustainable in the workplace:

Electrical Appliances

It’s amazing how people still leave work each day and don’t switch off their computer or screen properly.   As well as communal equipment which is left on at night or weekends such as printers, photocopiers and servers.   Even when items are plugged in but switched off this still releases a small amount of phantom power.

Some companies raise awareness and have their own green teams in place who walk offices after hours checking random workstations and place chocolate bars as a reward to those employees that have switched all equipment off.   As a motivational tool I personally like that idea!

Office Kitchen

We all love a good brew whether it’s tea or coffee, but have you ever thought when it’s your turn to make a round of drinks to just heat the water you need.   It’s always best to switch off other appliances when not in use, like toasters, coffee machines and microwaves to save a small amount of power.

Lighting

Most businesses are going for LED lighting as they are a far more cost effective option saving businesses up to 90% on their annual energy costs.

Make sure that lights are switched off in unoccupied rooms or some businesses install sensors.   Most offices have store rooms, photocopier rooms, archive stores and kitchens.   It’s a good idea to label switches with turn off this light stickers which gets everyone into the habit of switching them off.

During the day if there is enough light in your surroundings then lights should be switched off as they may not be making a difference in the bright daylight.

If you are using occupancy sensors these are useful for toilets where some businesses have seen an 80% reduction in lighting use.

Reduce Printing

To avoid printing multiple copies of a report or document why not save copies on your computer. Use recycled paper for printing and get into the habit of recycling everything that is no longer in use.   If I have any spare paper I always make sure it is recycled as there is a recycled paper station in the Sales office at Ecodek Towers.   I also use scrap paper for when I’m taking down messages or jotting down notes.

Check out this great article by Conserve Energy Future on 20 energy saving tips to reduce business energy costs which gives you some more useful tips!

We are always interested to learn about sustainable buildings at Ecodek. One in particular, the Co-operative Group’s building Angela Square in Manchester is one of the UK’s highest BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) rated buildings.

Angela Square is one of the tallest buildings in the UK outside London and creates 180,000 units of renewable electricity each year.

Angela Square in Manchester is one of the largest in Europe to have a BREEAM outstanding distinction as a result of its high, sustainable energy credentials.  Feature provided by Alan Seddon via Flickr

The building has its own source of heat and power generation, which gives power back to the National Grid and the atrium generates light by flooding the building with natural sunlight, reducing the artificial lighting by almost half.   Not only that, a rainwater recycling system has been set up for toilet flushing and irrigation and a twin skin façade acts as a duvet to insulate the offices in the winter and ventilate it in the summer.

Let’s not forget Bloomberg’s Headquarters in London which defines a new generation of 21st century office design. Not only is it the world’s most sustainable office it also is a LEED Gold Standard building.

The Bloomberg building was designed by architects, Foster & Partners and comprises two buildings, connected by glazed bridges across a retail arcade that bisects the site.

The building, which features a facade covered in rows of bronze louvers, was given a rating of Outstanding by BREEAM assessors, who ranks projects on environmental, social and economic sustainability.

Bloomberg Building – Distinctive bronze blades on the side of the building can be opened and closed according to the weather. Photo provided by David Holt via Flickr

Distinctive bronze blades on the side of the building can be opened and closed according to the weather. This natural ventilation system will take the pressure off more energy intensive air-conditioning systems.

Bespoke ceiling panels with a petal design have been inset with 500,000 energy saving LEDs. The panels also combine heating, cooling and acoustic functions.

To find out more about the Bloomberg building, check out this interesting article on My Arch Daily.

There are also ways to become more energy efficient at home.   Check out some of these great tips from Morning Chores on nine easy ways to save energy and money at home.

 

How do you conserve energy around the workplace? Leave us a comment in the comments field below.


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