With the notions of green energy and lower co2 emissions becoming increasingly important in Australia, it is positive to note many businesses are now making changes to the way they use electricity. Power usage isn't always the most critical function for enterprises, but with the available monetary savings and benefits to reputation of going green, there is no doubt that smarter energy solutions are becoming more popular.
Sustainable energy growing across Australia
According to the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA), the number of Green Star certifications year-on-year have jumped 40 per cent between 2014 and 2015. Last year, 218 individual projects were certified by the GBCA, compared to 156 in the year before.
"More than 530,000 Australians now work in Green Star-rated offices."
GBCA's Chief Executive Officer, Romilly Madew explained the scope of these results and what it means to the country as a whole.
"We have surpassed the magic 1,000 milestone, and now have 1,020 Green Star certified projects rated," she said.
"More than 530,000 Australians now work in Green Star-rated offices – that's 4.5 per cent of our total workforce. A further 4,400 people now live in Green Star-rated apartments and more than 16,800 students learn in Green Star-certified schools."
It is important for business leaders to understand that becoming a green organisation and making significant energy savings isn't limited to new buildings. If your operation is currently receiving power solely from the grid, this can be replaced with off-grid solutions such as microturbines that can be supplemented with solar and other renewable options.
While this can be perceived as a major step, businesses shouldn't be concerned with making positive changes to their energy consumption.
Building energy use has potential to spiral
Despite the best efforts of organisations such as the Green Building Council of Australia, there are certainly not enough businesses around the world committed to cutting back and changing their energy use. With natural resources fast running out and global temperature rises continuing to hit the headlines, now is the time for enterprises to actively pursue smarter opportunities.
This is certainly the message from the Energy Efficiency Exchange (EEX) which explained that building energy use accounts for over 33 per cent of global energy consumption. In fact, by the year 2050, this figure could reach 50 per cent – mostly as a result of sharp population and economic growth.
In Australia, buildings make up 19 per cent of total energy consumption, as cited in a recent Ernst & Young report.
As such, the EEX is calling for greater international collaboration between countries. In a December 3 media statement, the authority noted both building energy codes and performance trends as key to creating positive standards for the years ahead.
With greater use of electrical equipment and a wider electric network, power is an important commodity moving forward. However, if individual businesses around the world make use of efficiency policies and best-available technologies, projected building consumption can fall rather than rise. According to the EEX, this drop could be as large as 29 per cent by 2050.
Do you want to make a difference?
Moving away from the main grid is a great decision for any enterprise and this is where the team at Optimal Group can help. As the largest national distributor of Capstone microturbine energy generators, our knowledge and experience can support changing energy demands and usages throughout a building environment.
Regardless of your current power plans, we can tailor a product and plan to your requirements and ensure power security against grid failure. Capstone microturbine energy generators are used around the world, offering a unique balance of performance and reliability – ideal for growing businesses.