Organisations, especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), will continue to struggle with the impact of rising energy costs if a smarter approach to energy efficiency isn’t adopted. That is the message from an energy management specialist, who claims schemes like leased lighting can be a saving grace for businesses not only looking to save money, but enhance the health, productivity and wellbeing of their staff and organisation.
Chris Jenkins, director of Swansea-based EFT Consult – a firm specialising in energy and environmental management for organisations across all sectors – claims organisations need to get educated on the many advantages leased lighting schemes can have on energy bills, environmental standards and business operational risk.
It isn’t uncommon for office-based staff in an organisation to complain about inefficient lighting. Poor light quality is a very real health hazard, and although decision makers would not object to a modernised lighting system, obstacles arise when it comes to paying for it, often at the expense of employees’ health, productivity and overall wellbeing. Energy savings are therefore only one part of a bigger picture when it comes to business performance and profitability.
Yet a new lighting system that uses the latest technologies can be implemented through a leased lighting scheme, which offers the option of paying a monthly fee for the use of the lighting facility, rather than paying the total cost of the equipment and installation up front.
This rental approach has become increasingly popular over recent years as the burden of up front expenditure for a vast range of equipment and services is lifted by financial institutions and leasing companies. Due to there being no significant initial outlay, ownership risks are eliminated and cash flow benefits are provided by utilising energy savings to payback the monthly or quarterly repayments of a lease agreement.
There are government initiatives that encourage companies to undertake more energy efficient practices in this manner. The enhanced capital allowance scheme for energy saving technologies, for example, enables businesses to benefit from tax breaks when investing in eligible energy-saving equipment.
The Carbon Trust Green Business Fund is another initiative, offering an energy efficiency support service for SMEs in England, Wales and Scotland. It provides direct funded support and can offer a capital contribution of up to £10,000 towards an energy saving equipment purchase.
Chris Jenkins, director of EFT Consult, commented:
“Lighting has a significant impact on the majority of organisations and when it comes to increasing electricity costs, outdated lighting systems can be a serious culprit of additional spending.
“Leasing schemes are massive now and companies really should take advantage of the rewards they can offer. With tax incentives and various support initiatives available to companies, leased lighting should be seriously considered. It is ideal for organisations that need to modernise their lighting system with the latest technologies to benefit staff, customers and other visitors through better energy management. Adopting this approach also demonstrates a company’s commitment to energy efficient practices, while saving on costs.”
EFT Consult offers a holistic approach to energy management that takes into account economic, environmental health and social wellbeing principles to enable organisations to be self-sustainable whilst saving money. The firm has strategic partnerships with two of the world’s largest lighting and energy solutions specialists to ensure clients receive the highest quality equipment and service.