In today’s world, putting time aside to think about conserving energy is talked about more times than many, but are you actually acting on it? Here are some easy ways that your facility can achieve Energy Conservation..
Have Your Facility Make a Public Commitment to Conserve Energy
When institutional leaders make a public commitment, they are more likely to change behavior. Publicize your commitment towards energy conservation in things like your newsletters, mailing lists, blogs, advertising etc.
Choose an Energy Manager
Without making energy an individual’s job, conservation slips through the cracks. Assign a person within your business, particularly someone well versed in energy conservation (such as a person on the buildings and grounds committee), to monitor energy usage and enforce new habits. The person should:
- Establish a baseline of current energy use
- Monitor monthly use in relation to the baseline
- Oversee energy education of leaders
- Oversee conservation measures
- Make periodic reports to the business leaders to make conservation a habit
Establish a Baseline and a Target for your Energy Use
Without a baseline, you won’t know if you’ve saved energy. You also can’t set goals until you know where your energy usage stands currently. Here are some tips for establishing a baseline and targets:
- Gather your past years’ energy bills.
- Enter the monthly energy usage figures (not cost) into an excel spreadsheet.
- In separate columns in the same spreadsheet, or in a different spreadsheet, enter cost figures, accounting for any utility increases that may skew potential savings.
- Set goals for your quarterly and annual energy use.
- Aim for a 10% reduction in relation to the baseline during your first year.
Identify Energy Conservation Measures
Through Energy Audits, operational and technological measures to reduce energy usage are identified and recorded from the easiest to implement at little or no cost to the tougher and capital intensive measures; Detailed analysis showing estimated savings and return on investment periods is done. Simply turning off the lights when no one is in the room and closing windows when the AC is on can easily achieve you a large and measurable number of energy savings.
Evaluate Results, Publicize, take Next Steps
Publicity and celebration are key ingredients for a successful energy conservation campaign. It’s important to educate and publicize the wide variety of issues that pertain to energy conservation, including the links between energy, the environment, and financial responsibility. Here are some tips:
- Have your Energy Manager monitor financial and environmental impact.
- Report results – financial and environmental.
- Publicize your success; praise your leaders! Write a news release for your newsletter and local paper stating that facility is fighting global warming through energy conservation.
- Involve members in a fun way, such as a contest to have them guess the energy and/or cost savings for a prize.