Your Guide to Energy Audits and Management
Did you know that you might be wasting up to 30% of your facility's energy due to gaps in system efficiencies?
Running a facility, you know that saving at any opportunity you can is important. There has been a lot of talk about energy efficiency and while it brings a big sustainability boost to any organization, it also brings big financial savings when done right. Simple, short-term strategies can be implemented today to help with long-term savings for tomorrow, and they don't have to be complicated.
Everything your facility needs to know
Curious to learn more about your facility's energy consumption? Here's everything you need to know about implementing an energy audit and management strategy.
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What is an energy audit?
So what is an energy audit? An energy audit is an assessment of energy consumption in a given location which is used to find the inefficiencies. These types of reviews reveal your energy usage, and list recommendations for improvement.
An energy audit will show you the benchmark by which all your energy efficiency improvements in the future can be measured against. In an effort to count and generate savings, you have to know the energy profile of your facility, generated as a benchmark. As opposed to energy management, energy audits typically are a one-time process at the beginning of an organization's journey in energy efficiency.
Understanding the process
A typical energy audit will start with a review of the facility as a whole and feature an inspection for elements that may need immediate attention. From here, the energy audit will typically review any of the following depending on who you are consulting:
- Energy consumption, or electricity demand analysis
- Greenhouse gas emission calculation
- Monitoring of major electrical loads in real-time
- HVAC performance analysis
There are three big benefits to an energy audit:
- Financial savings: An energy audit will identify areas for improvement, and give you a tangible list of solutions you can implement right away to see cost savings in the future.
- Sustainability boost: Similarly, an energy audit will show you how much energy you are using in certain areas, and remedies to fix it and reduce your facility's carbon footprint.
- Behavioural analysis: With everything said and done, an energy audit will show your organization what their energy habits are, and how they can be changed to promote energy efficiency while saving costs. After all, give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
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What is energy management?
Energy management is about continuous improvement by monitoring energy consumption over time. As opposed to energy audits, energy management is a long-term, committed process to determine an organization's energy efficiency. Energy management follows a comprehensive system of actionable items, and how to go about completing them.
Energy management is the process of monitoring, controlling, and conserving energy in a building or organization. The energy management process starts with an energy audit of a given location.
Understanding the process
There are several ways for an energy management plan to be put in place, including:
- Metering your energy consumption and collecting the data
- Finding and quantifying opportunities to promote energy efficiency
- Targeting the opportunities to lower unnecessary energy consumption
- Tracking your progress at energy efficiency
- Reduce costs: this is becoming increasingly important as energy costs rise—a big reason to consider energy management.
- Reduce carbon emissions: Your organization may be keen to add energy management to its repertoire to reduce its carbon footprint and promote a green, sustainable image. Not least because promoting such an image is often good for the bottom line.
- Reduce risk: With energy management, you can reduce this risk by reducing your demand for energy consumption and by controlling it so as to make it more predictable.
What is the difference between energy audits and management?
At the end of the day, the difference between an energy audit and management lies in one being a systematic, one-time procedure and the other a long-term strategy dedicated to improving energy efficiency. An audit is an isolated study of energy practices, while energy management is a long-term, continued monitor of how efficient energy use is in a facility.
Why you need energy audits and management
Besides energy management or an energy audit, how else can your facility promote energy efficiency? Consider a facility management platform such as Xplor Recreation. Manage bookings, schedules, and rentals for indoor and outdoor facilities, parks, fields, campgrounds, meeting spaces, party venues, and access more features with our powerful facility management software. Use facility management software to automate time-consuming tasks and focus on what truly matters: your community.