The ‘Watts in Your Business’ project conducted by Apple and Pear Australia Ltd completed energy audits of 30 packhouses and orchards Australia-wide. This fact sheet shows how understanding electricity tariffs in a packhouse/orchard can save money.
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%.
After an energy assessor audited Tint A Car’s showroom, workshop area and staff room, the changes made by the business immediately led to a 20% drop in energy use (despite higher temperatures than the previous year). This was achieved by replacing an energy hungry staff fridge, updating desktop computers with laptops, installing a roof top solar system and changing staff practices.
The 30 staff of Joe Vella Insurance Brokers (JVIB) work out of a refurbished historic building in Cairns CBD. The assessor analysed tariffs and advised on how to stay on the current, cheaper tariff – including via installation of a solar PV system, and recommended numerous simple changes to reduce the building’s heat load and save money. JVIB immediately took action and the savings are expected to be imminent, given many of the implemented changes have a short payback time.
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 Casey’s IGA in far north Queensland, an energy assessor found the local supermarket could save $3750 per year by switching fluorescent tube lighting to light emitting diodes (LEDs). The business could also reduce costs in the supermarket’s deli display section, if more energy efficient lighting was used, or the display was ‘de-lamps’ by cutting back on lights. These and other measures could save the business thousands of dollars.
The Victorian Automobile Chamber of Commerce (VACC), the peak automotive body in Victoria and Tasmania, rolled out the Automotive Energy Information Program in October 2012. The program was designed to identify and promote energy efficiency practices and resources through the distribution of practical information for the industry to reduce costs and adopt energy efficiencies. This series of case studies were developed through program funded energy audits conducted by an energy specialist across a diverse range of businesses. They cover a range of topics including:
Connecting Australia’s largest energy users with price-competitive generation.