ongoing energy optimisation

Ongoing energy optimisation: why we need to look beyond initial savings

Ongoing energy optimisation: why we need to look beyond initial savings

April 8, 2024

Many of our clients have asked us, “Why do we need ongoing energy optimisation after identifying initial savings?” It’s a valid question that speaks to the broader misconception that energy management is a one-time fix. However, as experts in the field, we know that sustainable energy practices require a long-term commitment. Let’s explore why continual energy management is essential, even after identifying areas for improvement and initial cost savings.

Here are 8 reasons why you need ongoing energy optimisation:

1. Seasonal variations

Optimal energy management requires a minimum commitment of 12 months as businesses experience fluctuating energy demands due to seasonal changes and evolving operations throughout the year. For instance, heating and cooling requirements vary drastically between summer and winter months. Smart energy management ensures adjustments are made to optimise consumption throughout the year.

2. Operational changes

Whether through expansion, downsizing, technology upgrades, or shifts in workspace utilisation, any operational changes in your business directly impact your energy consumption. These changes necessitate ongoing energy optimisation to make sure you’re still operating efficiently. For example, scaling operations, adopting new technologies, and modifying processes can all influence energy intensity. By monitoring fluctuations in energy demand and proactively adjusting energy settings, you’ll be able to adapt to operational changes, maintain efficiency, and mitigate unnecessary energy consumption.

3. Equipment efficiency maintenance

Over time, machinery and systems can degrade, leading to decreased efficiency and increased energy consumption. Continuous monitoring enables proactive maintenance, preserving optimal performance and avoiding unexpected downtime. As all businesses know, maintenance is never finished! It involves regular inspections, calibration, and upgrades to ensure equipment operates at peak efficiency levels.

4. Regulatory compliance

Energy regulations are subject to change, especially in South Africa’s energy-poor landscape. Ongoing energy management and reporting (including staying updated on evolving energy efficiency standards, reporting requirements, carbon emissions regulations, and tax incentives) ensures that your business saves money, remains compliant, avoids penalties, and maintains a positive reputation.

5. Financial adaptability

Energy costs fluctuate, incentives and policies change, and new opportunities for savings may arise. Active energy management empowers you to adapt to changing market conditions, capitalise on financial opportunities, and mitigate risks. The best ways to build your bottom line:

  • Conduct regular energy audits
  • Carefully analyse utility bills
  • Explore innovative financing options for energy efficiency projects
  • Ensure that your alternative energy solutions are fit for purpose

6. Environmental responsibility

With sustainability policies gaining prominence and ‘go green’ pressures mounting, businesses must take steps to reduce their environmental footprint. Ongoing energy optimisation gives businesses the data they need to implement energy-efficient technologies and minimise energy consumption and carbon emissions over time.

7. Detection of illegal connections and abuse

Undetected illicit energy consumption can inflate your bills and strain your infrastructure. Smart energy solutions provide insights to identify and halt abuse, to ensure you’re only paying for legitimate usage and reducing unnecessary costs. Crime can occur at any time, so it helps to be able to leverage data analytics to detect anomalies in energy consumption patterns.

8. Maximising revenue from excess power

Some regions in South Africa allow businesses and households producing surplus energy to sell it back to the grid. In Cape Town, for example, businesses and households have earned more than R25 million for their excess solar PV power since the start of the 2022/23 financial year. Ongoing smart energy management allows your business to sell electricity back to the grid through net metering, maximising revenue potential.

Take control of your energy future with THOHO Energy

The journey towards efficient energy management is an ongoing process that extends far beyond initial measurements and savings. PowerRadar™ empowers businesses with real-time insights and data-driven strategies to enhance resilience, efficiency, and sustainability.

Learn more about how THOHO Energy can help you take control of your energy consumption and add to your bottom line—now and for years to come.