Fossil fuels, energy efficient equipment and The Carbon Trust
Having recently been involved in a review of utility expenses with some of our SME clients I came to challenge the notion that “you can’t get something for nothing in this life”. Well, on the basis of some number crunching, a lot of meetings and discussions and the like with various others, it would appear that it is in fact possible to get something for nothing.
The technology upon which energy efficient lighting, heating, cooling etc. is based has developed so rapidly over the last, say 10 years that if your equipment was installed around that time, or before, then it just might be the case that you could change your lighting, heating/ cooling equipment “for nothing”.
In one of the cases that we have been looking into, as I referenced above, we have moved beyond the paper review of the costings, and are now looking at the physical equipment that is being proposed.
In that case the lights are ‘burning’ for approximately 50 hours per week. It would appear that new energy efficient LED based lighting can be introduced to provide a ‘similar level of lighting’ but delivering between 65% – 70% efficiency gain on the current lighting.
The Carbon Trust currently provide interest free loans to SME’s based in Northern Ireland and Wales. These loans are typically repaid over the first 3 – 4 years after installation.
The projected cashflow savings (through reduced payments to the electricity supplier) being delivered through the installation of these LED lights, in the case we have looked at, is greater than the monthly repayment of the Carbon Trust loan – albeit only by a small margin during the loan repayment period. However, once the loan is repaid in full the savings all yours!
For more information on Carbon Trust and their interest free loan see their website: http://www.carbontrust.com/client-services/northern-ireland
Our next article will look at the Enhanced Capital Allowances position and their impact on the acquisition of energy efficient equipment.