Ben Gill, our business engagement chap has been busy working with businesses in Hackbridge on a project that supports them as they green their operations. Greening Businesses in Hackbridge is not just a project, it's a network for any business in Hackbridge that is working to improve their environmental impacts.
As this project goes on, we are sharing some of the top tips and advice businesses are receiving on this blog. So this month, we are focusing on office lighting. Here, Carbon Trust advice recommends the following:
Energy efficient lamps
If you have fluorescent tube lighting, changing from T12 tubes to T8s will bring energy savings of 10%. Upgrading lamps and fittings to T5 will bring even greater savings and will retain a high light output. This short video explains how to replace T12 tubes with more energy efficient lighting.
Our experience shows many businesses are lighting unoccupied spaces. Occupancy sensors switch off lights when a space isn’t being used and can reduce lighting costs by 30%. Watch this video to find out more.
Many buildings are designed to have enough natural light during the day so you can turn the lights off. Often, working environments forget to turn lights off even when there is enough natural light. Light sensors (photocells) can switch off or dim artificial lighting when there is sufficient daylight. To see if these controls would work for your site, watch the video.
You may want to consider combination sensors, which are a mixture of occupancy and daylight sensing; these are widely available but more expensive. Alternatively, you might just be able to engage staff in switching lights off, through education or using "Switch it off" stickers – you can either make your own or order some from the Carbon Trust.
5 steps to sorting out your lighting
Here are the steps for acting on office lighting energy:
1) Have a walk around – investigate current lighting technologies in use and which lights are being left on by mistake or for too long. It's worth chatting to different employees to find out their experience and anything they need. Click here for an overview of lighting technologies.
2) Make an action plan – for what you want to replace, change and what sort of sensors would work best. Guidance on this is available here.
3) Check for discount opportunities – your energy efficient lighting equipment may be eligible for Enhanced Capital Allowances, so you can get 100% tax relief.
4) Find suppliers - for sensor equipment, you might already know a good electrician or building service engineer. If not, you can use Google or even Google maps to find a supplier close to home.
5) Start saving – with your new lights and sensor equipment, you should instantly start saving energy.