UnitingCare Community is a Queensland-based provider of community services. After energy audits were completed on a number of its 297 properties, the organisation began energy efficiency improvements as one of its first initiative. At Gipps Street, electricity consumption was high relative to floor area, until changes were made.
When the Multicultural Services Centre of WA conducted an energy audit, air conditioning showed up as a large cost for the community services organisation. Numerous savings have been made since implementing recommendations like: adjusting thermostats to 22°C in winter, and 20°C in summer; regular cleaning of vents, ducts and skylights; task specific cooling via ceiling fans or portable fans; replacing florescent lighting with light emitting diodes (LEDs).
Generations Church, just north of Cairns, comprises a large hall, served by a large commercial chiller unit; a number of small rooms and offices (all with wall air conditioners) and an adjacent building with toilets, kitchen and a community room. An energy assessment show that for an investment of $2550, the top five opportunities to save could be implemented, bringing projected annual savings of $1430.
At the Footscray Community Arts Centre in Footscray, the site includes a heritage listed building and warehouse, and an outdoor amphitheatre and lawn. The site’s annual electricity spend it $27,000 (from an annual usage of 130,000 kWh) plus around $3000 in natural gas cost (from an annual usage of 200,000 MJ). An energy assessment identified this could be reduced by $11,000 per year (39% of annual spend) by implementing the suggested opportunities.
Aquatic Centres use an enormous amount of energy. But with efficiency measures, YMCA Spark pilot site Peter Krenz Aquatic Centre managed to cut electricity use by 8.5% and identified opportunities to save a further 20%. This Aquatic Centre found that by being more energy efficient and making some smart energy investments, they could have a reduction off their energy bills of at least $30,000 per year.
The average small-medium retail business can use 80,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity a year. Makin’ Groceries in Brunswick Victoria saved on the energy costs of running its walk-in cool room by implementing simple actions including replacing door seals, turning lights off when the cool room is unoccupied, storing produce as soon as it arrives to prevent heat gain from ambient air, regulating temperatures between 3 and 4°C, and keeping the cool room three quarters full (this is more efficient than running it half full).
The Union Jack Hotel has power bills of around $13,000 to $15,000 per month. After the results of two energy assessments were in, the business knew it would save over $3000 by switching to light emitting diodes (LEDs) lights, and more by installing a key card system for guests (to ensure lights and air conditioning turn off when guests are out). Further air conditioning savings (30%) were possible by upgrading to a more efficient system. These and other changes immediately save the business slash its electricity spend by 14%.
A Level 2 energy audit at this luxury residential apartment building found thousands of dollars in potential energy savings. A change in energy tariff would reduce power costs, switching to light emitting diodes (LEDs) would save $1247 a year, and putting a timer on a heavy duty exhaust fan in the car park would cut it’s $3000 power costs. Acting on the recommendations quickly saved the body corporate 10% of its energy spend, despite electricity price hikes and significant savings will be reflected over time.
At Bendigo’s Indulge Fine Belgian Chocolates, energy efficiency improvements began with behaviour change: at night, all lights are switched and electric hot water is unplugged. Next, the owner installed light emitting diodes (LEDs), an energy-efficient refrigerator, never ran the air conditioner at less than 25°C degrees, and used excess heat from machinery to replace the store’s reverse cycle heater in winter. These combined actions mean that despite the business growing 20% in the last 4 years, its energy consumption has stayed still; a cost saving of $1600 per annum.
At Goldfields Revegetation, a specialised plant nursery in Victoria’s Mandurang, the owners had a goal of reducing the company’s energy consumption by 30%. An energy assessment proved up to 70% savings were possible, and would save the company $6000 per annum. Reductions came from: replacing 50W halogens with energy efficient 35W halogens; installing motion sensors on external flood lights; fitting a timer to the electric hot water system; installing 1.6kW solar PV system; and numerous behaviour changes.