UK gas costs and electricity grid costs recently reached record highs. For those that are exposed to these rates there could be serious consequences. For those that were lucky enough to dodge these bullets due to hedging or fixed tariffs, then the lesson should also be learned that you can’t avoid exposure to the market long term. When your hedge or fixed rate ends, what will the market be like then? Are you prepared for that risk ?
But what can you do about it ?
The best thing you can do to avoid these prices is to reduce consumption. Suddenly energy efficiency measures whose payback was too long previously should be more attractive because of the higher costs of energy. It would be wise to revisit what opportunities you have, and to have your operational energy needs reviewed. Inefficiencies that you have lived with for years such as over-sized steam boilers, inefficient motors, outdated refrigeration, obsolete plant, power correction, lack of VSDs, T5 lighting etc, will be worth addressing.
Additionally, generating your own power on site – “behind the meter” – avoids the non-commodity costs and CCL that go with grid power, and is amongst the cheapest form of power you can now source.
There are various low carbon and renewable options available.
Renewables are currently only intermittent generators …..solar only works in the day (and not as well in winter), wind only works when the wind is blowing sufficiently. Also correct sizing of a solar array or wind turbine really impacts return on investment, so its wise not to go too large.
For those with more complex energy needs, combined heat and power systems can operate 24 hours a day, providing the largest savings. They can provide heating, steam or even cooling as a by-product, reducing grid electricity or gas usage, and providing more resilience, They can also be carbon reducing or even carbon negative. Most CHP are also ready for 100% hydrogen when it becomes available, giving it some future proofing.
A key question though is where does the money come from for these measures ? If the paybacks are still too long, or cash is already committed to other projects, then you can look for zero capex options where the provider will install the measures without cost to you, and then charge you over time for their use. This is what we do at OEP Group (www.on-site.energy) for energy intensive manufacturers.
We can conduct a free review of your energy usage and recommend efficiency measures and onsite generation solutions without any commitments from you. At the end, we provide you with our recommendations for both efficiency measures and onsite generation, and options for both capex and zero capex funding.
If this sounds interesting then please get in touch with our CEO, David Kipling at email@example.com or call him on 0151 271 0037.