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Planning and Building An Energy Efficient Office

The old mantra that a business runs on efficiency may be well versed, however, the phrase holds as true today as it ever did. Yet while many consider office efficiency to extend only to inter-department

The old mantra that a business runs on efficiency may be well versed, however, the phrase holds as true today as it ever did. Yet while many consider office efficiency to extend only to inter-department cooperation and open channels of communications, efficiency actually applies to every part of a business, including its energy usage.

Energy research

UK energy supply company British Gas estimate that almost half of the energy used by businesses in Britain is wasted. In monetary terms, this huge profligacy equates to around £8bn needlessly lost every year. This energy wastage not only affects businesses, it also affects the environment too, and contributes to the huge carbon footprint created by the UK every year. In fact, among the five most populous nations in Europe, comprised of the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain, the British Isles tops the list of the most wasteful.

Fortunately, cutting energy wastage is eminently doable and just a few simple changes in how a business is run can make a real difference. Designing an energy efficient office starts with the workforce. The aforementioned survey conducted by British Gas found that most of the energy wasted by British businesses actually occurs place outside of working hours, so it is vital that all employees turn off their office equipment on leaving work for the day. This includes switching off computers, fans and lights. The practice should become second nature after a while, like closing an open door.

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For general use office items, that are less easy to turn off and on, such as vending machines and water coolers, you can attach timers to these pieces of equipment so that they turn off after office hours.

 energy efficient office buildings

By MICHAEL BROWN under CC BY 2.0

 

The Benefits of  energy efficient office

During office hours, sleep modes on electrical items can help to save around 70% more energy than when they are fully operating. You can also help to increase the energy efficiency of your office by ensuring that you’re using energy efficient equipment in the first place. In Europe, the energy efficiency of machines, such as fridges and vending machines, are rated on a scale from A+++ (the highest) to D (the lowest). To make sure that you’re getting the most efficient equipment for your office, you need to make sure you get machines rated at A+ or higher.

More drastic measures of increasing the efficiency in your office include insulating your premises, which will reduce the amount you have to use heaters or air conditioning, and even using renewable energy systems, such as solar panels, to help power your office.

Energy efficient office subsidies

Designing an eco-friendly room or energy efficient office can be quite expensive to set up, however, the government offer grants for environmentally friendly businesses. Moreover, the money you spend in setting up your office will be recouped through long term savings, making your investment a wise one.

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