How to Save Energy Costs During Lockdown

Back How to Save Energy Costs During Lockdown

By Carbon Intelligence

Last week the UK government announced a 3 week extension to the lockdown. We have already seen the impact COVID-19 is having on the way in which we manage buildings and consume energy. It presents a significant opportunity to maximise energy savings now and into the future.

In response to this we have published our ‘Quick Wins to Managing Facilities during COVID-19 lockdown’ to give you the tools to save cost and maintain operational efficiency, as well as ensuring buildings are safe for remaining staff and able to be fully reoccupied at short notice.

Remote monitoring and proactive management will help reduce your building energy costs and health & safety risks during the COVID-19 crisis and drive your organisation’s overall sustainability strategy. But in the short term you can generate energy and cost savings with simple proactive steps.

Actions you can take today:

  • Minimise central HVAC plant runtime in unoccupied buildings
  • Avoid scheduling HVAC plant to run during DuOS red band times, when electricity is more expensive
  • Switch off unused lighting, computers, printers, screens and other plug loads to reduce baseload energy waste
  • Confirm that PIR occupancy sensors are turning off lights as intended
  • Use ‘smart’ power bars to eliminate vampire loads
  • Use demand-led BMS control strategies and hold-offs for the HVAC plant
  • Consider using wider control deadbands and weather compensated set points for the HVAC plant
  • Engage with any remaining occupiers on changes to the building operations to ensure they can help drive energy reductions

3 things to consider in preparation for reopening buildings:

  1. More awareness of health & safety: We now see heightened awareness about respiratory health and virus transmission so the building management system must be set up to serve these requirements with adequate ventilation rates, schedules, and fresh air controls.
  2. Occupancy patterns will be different: Following the lockdown we will continue to see social distancing and also some degree of remote working arrangements still in place. This will impact workspace layouts and density, which in turn can affect plant scheduling requirements and internal cooling loads, so this should be reviewed for each tenant as they return to the building to ensure that the energy services continue to serve their needs.
  3. Continued focus on cost reduction and operational efficiency: Given the wide economic impacts of COVID-19 there will be an ongoing driver for cost reduction and efficiencies, and you can leverage smart building technologies to help achieve this. Wireless sensors and software management platforms can give you better visibility and control over your energy use, as well as insight on air quality and space utilisation to help you make informed decisions about how best to manage your assets.

Resources that will help

A guide to Quick Wins to Manage Facilities during the COVID-19 Lockdown that you can share with your team to help them achieve cost savings during this crisis.

Webinar in partnership with Aviva Plc - ‘Saving cost during times of low occupancy’ that explains in detail immediate steps you can take to reduce costs and how remote monitoring can help. Scroll to the bottom of this page to watch the recording.

About Us - Author note

Carbon Intelligence helps some of the largest companies in the world set and achieve ambitious sustainability targets to tackle the climate crisis. We bring together a world-class team of strategists, engineers, technologists, data scientists and educators; sustainability people who bring fresh thinking to your corporate sustainability. We connect corporate strategy with deliberate evidence-based programmes, from building optimisation to enhancing carbon sinks. With a decade’s worth of experience, insights from 45,000 buildings in 60 countries and some of the finest minds in sustainability, we are redefining the carbon intelligent enterprise. What is your level of ambition? Talk to us today about how we can help.