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How do you eat an elephant? …One bite at a time – ba boom!

OK, so it’s an awful joke but it’s also a useful analogy when trying to get to grips with your energy consumption.

Think of it like this, the total energy consumption for your enterprise is one giant chunk (the elephant) of energy that seemingly has a life of its own and is very difficult to get your arm around!

So, the first problem is … just how big is your elephant? To figure this out we have to look to data management. The only way you can see the elephants entire size is by collecting all of your bills and energy information into one place. Not the easiest task but possible; with the right system, you can upload bills and/or meter data from any supplier this then makes it easier to view the energy data for your whole enterprise.

Next, you need to understand which site is the largest energy consumer – Focus on this one first.

Break the site down into smaller ‘bite’ size pieces using sub-metering. Depending on the site size you could think about buildings, floors of a building or even individual distribution boards. This will help to keep your capital costs to a minimum and helps you tackle your biggest energy spend first, this is also likely to be where you can make your biggest savings.

Now that you have some sub meters in place, look at the new data, which sub-meter has the largest consumption? This is your next chunk to manage – if it’s cost effective, you could sub-meter further to get an even clearer picture of your energy use and so on…

You can use the data you have to identify and justify energy savings projects such as LEDlighting, etc, do some research find out how much you are likely to save and what your return on investment is going to be, savings can ultimately be offset against any future project.

Great so you’ve got your savings from the first chunk, now it’s time to focus on the next largest chunk and repeat … it might take you a while to eat a whole elephant, but at least you’ll have a methodical approach to energy savings!