Small changes result in big savings

Small changes result in big savings

JUNE 2015 |

MEANDER VALLEY Council has recently implemented simple energy saving measures at three of its highest energy consuming facilities.

Council received funding of $151,000 from the Australian Government in 2014 to help deliver its $226,000 building energy efficiency project.

The three buildings selected: the Council Offices in Westbury, the Visitor Information Centre, and the Community Complex in Deloraine consume 85% of the total energy of Council-owned buildings.

The upgrades have so far reduced energy use over the six months to 1st April 2015 by 26% overall. This equates to an estimated $16,930 saving per year based on the 2011/12 and 2012/13 financial years. The saving is as much as 47% at the Community Complex when compared to the two previous years.

“Not only are we seeing a significant reduction in energy use at our buildings but visitors and staff are benefitting from more comfortable conditions,” Mayor Craig Perkins said. “Council is constantly looking for ways to become more efficient and reduce costs to ensure that its buildings are sustainable and affordable.”

The work included improvements to heating, hot water, insulation, draft proofing, lighting and more. Local contractors and businesses were engaged and have benefitted from the project.

Changes in energy use patterns have been assessed using two years of historic energy data, onsite energy audits before and after the upgrades, as well as real-time energy monitoring. The project outcomes have been shared with local residents through a series of education workshops to help them identify simple ways to save money and improve comfort levels in their homes and businesses.

“It is really clear that you can make a difference to your energy usage through simple changes to lighting, insulation, draft proofing, hot water and other measures.

“We’ve learned some valuable lessons during this process and we are excited to be able to share them with our community,” said Mayor Perkins.

An ‘efficiency fund’ will be established to use savings on future efficiency upgrades and achieve even more savings; creating an ongoing benefit to Council and community.

For more information on reducing energy costs, contact Craig Plaisted, Project Officer for Meander Valley Council on 6393 5324 or email craig.plaisted@mvc.tas. gov.au.