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[ Focus: Energy efficiency ] Your quick guide to the CRC


The majority of savings will have to come from simple energy efficiency improvements on refurbishment projects


n Upgrading equipment with high-energy performance equipment;


n Identifying and avoiding energy-hungry equipment; n Kinetic energy recovery (frequency inverters); and n Machinery energy saving modes.


The guide also advises that many building operators can also take advantage of cost savings from power factor correction or voltage optimisation. However, the feasibility and impact of these techniques varies, and access to competent electrical advice is essential. Savings can be vast. ‘We make a guarantee to our clients


that we can save 30 per cent on their electricity bills,’ says Steve Harvey, CEO with Poole-based Harvey Electrical and sister firm Anolis Renewable Energy. ‘We carry out an energy audit on the premises and find that we can easily achieve those kind of savings by upgrading the existing lighting and so on.’ The Carbon Trust’s website (www.carbontrust.co.uk) offers


a wealth of information on what kind of savings to expect from particular technologies. The Trust also provides top tips, depending on the size of a client’s business and their sector of operation.


Incentives If a client still needs convincing about the merits of investing in energy-saving technology, point them in the direction of the various grants and incentives that are still available, despite government cutbacks: n Interest-free loans from the Carbon Trust – loans are unsecured and interest free, with no arrangement fees. Loans


The Carbon Reduction Commitment Energy Efficiency Scheme (CRC) is an EU-wide initiative to encourage major energy users to reduce their carbon emissions. It will include published league tables to name and shame those that fail to comply, as well as give kudos to the highest achievers. There are two levels of participation. Organisations that have half-hourly metering (HHM) and consume over 6,000 MWh of electricity per annum (equivalent to a spend of roughly £500,000 per year) are required to participate fully. Those with HHM but consumption of between 3,000 MWh and 6,000 MWh are known as information declarers, which involves submitting data on carbon emissions. Fully participating organisations have to monitor their emissions and purchase carbon allowances on the basis of their consumption. The original intention was to allow organisations to recoup the costs of investment in energy efficient technology from the pot of money received from allowances. However, in the recent Comprehensive Spending Review, chancellor George Osborne decided to hang on to those funds for the Treasury rather than recycle it to participants. In effect the CRC has become a pollution tax.


Efficient collection and validation of carbon data will prove essential in compiling accurate reports, in compliance with the legislation. Inaccurate data can lead to heavy fines. Firms had until 30 September 2010 to register with the Environment Agency. The


Environment Agency estimates that some 3,000-4,000 organisations are eligible to participate fully and around 15,000 should declare. Those that failed to register in time can be subjected to fines of an initial £5,000, with a further sum of £500 per day of non registration.


are offered between £3,000 and £100,000 and can be repaid over a period of up to four years; n Lower VAT – many energy efficiency and low/zero carbon technologies have a VAT rate of five per cent; and n Enhanced Capital Allowances (ECAs) – allowing 100 per cent first year tax relief on qualifying capital expenditure (allowing the organisation to write off the cost of the qualifying equipment against taxable profits in the year of purchase). For more information visit: www.eca.gov.uk. Clients are waking up to the fact that energy costs are on


the rise and carbon reduction legislation is only going to get tougher. Make sure it is your firm that is advising them on how to reduce energy bills – or someone else will.


Case study 3: Molson Coors (UK) energy management with Schneider Electric


Leading brewer Molson Coors (UK) has implemented a new energy management programme to reduce its carbon emissions, with help from Schneider Electric.


The brewer has set some challenging resource reduction targets, which include a four per cent year-on- year reduction of energy consumption. In addition, as part of the company’s worldwide corporate energy policy, it has made a commitment to ‘develop a corporate culture of responsible management of energy by educating, involving and motivating their employees’. As part of this global commitment, Steve Alderson, group energy and electrical manager for Molson Coors (UK), appointed Schneider Electric to drive an internal awareness campaign, educating employees on ways to become energy efficient. The schedule of activity undertaken by Molson Coors (UK) involved Schneider Electric’s Culture Change


Programme, which has been developed to address the growing need for UK businesses to implement simple measures to increase profitability by encouraging best practice internally. It involves a member of Schneider Electric’s expert team educating employees on a number of issues, ensuring everyone realises their own responsibilities within an energy management programme.


Winter 2010 ECA Today 47


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