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Commercial buildings are one of the largest sources of greenhouse gas emissions in the world. Reducing energy consumption in commercial buildings is a challenge. The EPA has mandated that all states must reduce their carbon dioxide emissions by at least 30% from 2020 to 2030, and the majority of this reduction will need to come from reductions in electricity use.
Fortunately, there are many ways for building owners and managers to make significant progress towards these goals.
Here are some of the best measures that can help to reduce energy consumption in commercial buildings:
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Install Occupancy Sensors
Occupancy sensors are an essential component of a smart building infrastructure. Install occupancy sensors in all areas where people are present during working hours such as restrooms, break rooms, and conference rooms. These sensors automatically turn off lights when no one is present which saves money!
They also help ensure that employees aren’t wasting resources by leaving lights on when they shouldn’t be or forgetting to turn them off when they leave a room after finishing their work there (which happens surprisingly often!). You can also install motion sensors at exits or entrances so that lights don’t stay on outside or inside if someone leaves or comes into the building after hours or during non-business hours (if you have security guards who do rounds, etc.).
This will help keep energy usage in check and result in reduced bills since you won’t be paying for unnecessary light usage at night or other times when no one is there! You may even receive additional savings from utility companies if you enroll in their rebate programs!
Replace Old Lighting Fixtures with Energy-efficient LED Bulbs
LED lights are more expensive than incandescent and fluorescent bulbs, but they last longer and use less electricity. It is estimated that for every dollar spent on LEDs, you can save $10 in energy costs over the lifetime of the bulb. According to Energy Star, a typical business can save approximately $180 per year in energy costs for every 1,000 square feet of space it uses if it replaces its existing lighting with LED lighting.
The average lifespan of an LED bulb is 10 years, compared to the 1-3 year lifespan of a standard incandescent bulb. This means you won’t have to replace them as often!
With energy efficient lighting, the cost of replacing old lighting fixtures with new ones is more than offset by the savings in electricity consumption.
Upgrade Air Conditioning and Heating Systems to More Efficient Ones
Upgrading your HVAC system to a more efficient one can reduce your energy consumption significantly. According to Energy Star, a business that upgrades an old inefficient HVAC system with a new high-efficiency unit will save around $300 per year in energy costs for each ton of cooling capacity installed (or about $25 per ton).
The payback time on this investment is usually between two and five years depending on the type of HVAC system you have installed and how much it costs to upgrade it. This is one of the most effective ways to reduce your business’s energy consumption quickly and easily because the ROI is so quick!
Energy efficient HVAC systems are designed to use less electricity than conventional air conditioning and heating units, which helps reduce their overall impact on the environment.
Also, replacing old air filters with energy-efficient ones can help reduce energy consumption by up to 50% and improve indoor air quality. It is recommended that you change the filter once every three months or more frequently if needed.
Use Natural Light Whenever Possible
Using natural light instead of artificial lighting will help save on electricity costs and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time! This can be achieved by installing new windows or replacing existing windows with those that block out heat but allow for ample daylight to enter the building. In addition, it is recommended that you keep blinds closed during daytime hours in order to prevent excessive heat from entering the building through windows.
Install a Programmable Thermostat
Programmable thermostats are the most effective way to cut down on heating and cooling costs. These devices can be programmed to switch off your heating or air conditioning when you are away, or when you go to bed at night. If you have a programmable thermostat, you don’t need to worry about manually adjusting the temperature in your building. This means that the temperature will always be comfortable no matter what time of day it is.
With a programmable thermostat, you can set up different temperatures during different times of day so that less energy is used during peak hours. You can also use a programmable thermostat with a setback feature which allows you to set back the temperature by one or two degrees for just one hour each day – this will help reduce heat loss while still ensuring that it’s warm enough for everyone who needs it.
You may be able to get rebates from your local power company if you install a programmable thermostat or replace old appliances with Energy Star appliances. The government offers tax credits for those who make these upgrades as well.