Saving energy at work and home this Earth Day
On 22nd April each year across the globe, people come together to celebrate Earth Day. Providing a great opportunity to raise awareness of a number of important things, including how we can all invest in our planet to build a better future. From organising clean ups, to thinking sustainably.
This year, we’re choosing to look at energy consumption and how we can all make a difference at home and in the workplace, knowing that lots of small changes can all add up.
The global energy crisis
Data shared by earthday.org encouragingly shows that coal demand across the globe decreased in 2019 and 2020. Although demand was expected to have risen in 2021, it’s great to see that experts believe that renewable energy will be projected to surpass coal in 2025, as the one of the largest electricity sources globally.
So while there are some promising trends showing that the balance is finally shifting, the rising cost of energy has highlighted the need now more than ever to use our power conservatively.
Energy saving tips at home
Know your wattage! You might be surprised to see that kitchen equipment such as counter top air fryers output less energy than switching on your full oven. Whilst leaving too many small appliances switched on for your convenience, could be increasing the energy bill.
With people now wanting the convenience of smarter homes, this need to constantly be switched on and connected to local wireless networks could be hiking up your energy bill. It’s convenient to be able to tell your TV to record a programme using a mobile phone app whilst you’re sat in the office, or switch on the lights as you walk in through the door – but how much does that convenience add to the energy bill?
With the growing increase in renewable energy, such as wind power, it could also be advantageous to consider switching to a green energy tariff, or look at options to install solar panels onto your building to sell excess energy back to the grid.
Energy savings tips in the workplace
Whether you’re working in a small office, or a larger building with teams spanning multiple floors, there’s always ways to save energy.
A typical suggestion energy experts recommend is to ensure the lighting in the building is as efficient as possible, include switching to LED lights to help reduce usage and life span. As well ensuring large sections of rooms aren’t powered from a single switch – which can result in vast areas being lit that do not necessarily need to be operational. Smarter lighting installations that switch off lighting when no movement is detected and instantly come on when people enter a room or corridor, are also great options to reduce unnecessary energy consumption.
Making sure electronic equipment such as printers and escalators have energy saving profiles, can also help to minimise excess consumption.
When it comes to the smaller changes that can make a difference if delivered on scale, think about the electronic equipment that colleagues use every day. Often, a worker’s technology set-up includes a laptop docking station and dual monitors. Do all new starters need two screens to complete their work? Could colleagues run their laptops on the battery for periods of time whilst in the office, without the need to constantly plug in the power supply? Does the technology in meeting rooms need to be kept switched on at all times?
Organisations may want to consider appointing energy champions within their office, to look for further ways to reduce energy consumption.
Building energy consumption into your wider carbon strategy
For organisations looking to make a much bigger impact on the world around them, these energy efficiency initiatives can form part of a wider carbon reduction strategy. With the overall objective of becoming net-zero and carbon negative.
Last year the NRL Group embarked on their own carbon journey, working with One Carbon World to take the necessary steps to achieve the Carbon Neutral International Standard, and signing up to the UN’s Climate Neutral Now Initiative.