Manage your energy use
Reducing energy use is not always an option, but managing how and when you use energy can go a long way towards helping you negotiate a better energy contract and reducing your bills.
Carefully consider the following opportunities to see which options will best suit your energy needs:
Shift your energy use to cheaper periods
Some of the ways you can reduce your energy use during peak periods include switching off unnecessary equipment, installing automatic timers or using alternative energy. This allows you to spread out your energy use to cheaper periods and may help reduce your network charges. Shifting your energy use also gives you the opportunity to negotiate a better contract.
Choose energy efficient options
Although switching to energy efficient technology can cost you money up front, it can save you in the long run. Some options to consider include purchasing or leasing energy efficient equipment, regularly maintaining equipment, switching to gas or electric vehicles, changing to energy efficient lighting, managing standby power use, and installing timers, smart meters and displays.
Rebates and programmes are also offered by some states and territories for small businesses switching to energy efficient options.
Switch to alternative energy
Whether your energy use is large or small, it’s worth considering alternative energy options such as switching to a green energy provider, using alternative fuels, installing solar systems to generate your own electricity or heat pumps to reduce your electricity consumption. Before you make the switch, consider all your options carefully to ensure they suit your business needs and investigate any potential costs.
There are many alternative electricity options available today. Businesses who install alternative electricity systems may be paid by retailers for the electricity they send into the network (a feed-in tariff). The feed-in tariff will be based on the type and amount of electricity generated.
If you plan to sell electricity generated from your alternative electricity system, make sure you follow the Australian Energy Regulator's retail guidelines. In particular, you’ll need to seek a retailer authorisation or a retail exemption if you plan to sell to other sites within your area.
Having employees on board with energy efficiency targets can not only help you reduce energy use, it can also boost morale. All employees can work together to achieve a shared goal and be encouraged to contribute innovative solutions.
These solutions can have a positive impact on efficiency, often making your employees’ jobs easier and improving the way your business operates. Savings can also be used to purchase better equipment and reward employees.
What to do...
- See the Energy Efficiency Exchange (EEX) website for ways to Reduce energy costs in your sector and opportunities for your overall energy demand.
- Find details on energy rebates and programmes available to small business on the Your Energy Savings website. Businesses in the ACT, NSW, SA, VIC and TAS can find out more about using GreenPower.
- Search our Grants and Assistance to find more assistance near you.
- Read these case studies on businesses funded by the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) to find out how they managed their energy use.
- Look at some of the renewable energy projects funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).