Energys Group helps Ormiston & Brooke Weston Multi-Academy Trusts achieve annual energy savings of £190,000 across 12 Academies

Energys Group won a competitive tender, worth over £1.7million, to manufacture, supply and install LED lighting to twelve Academies for two Academy Trusts.

The Ormiston Academies Trust and Brooke Weston Trust are sponsors of primary and secondary academies. As educational trusts, their aims are for all young people to have access to the highest academic, social and practical skills required to achieve their full potential, whether going on to study at a leading university or entering the world of work.

The opportunity

With Brooke Weston and Ormiston Trusts spending over £2.7 million a year on energy and needing to spend over £1 million on lighting replacement over the next 5 years, both Trusts urgently needed to put in place energy efficiency programmes which would achieve a number of priorities: reduce the trusts’ energy bills; address the challenge of lighting conditions; reduce the environmental impact in terms of CO2 emissions from the trusts’ estates and deliver a procurement model and benchmark data which would allow the project to be replicated by other Multi-Academy Trusts.

The academies within each trust which were part of the project all had old, inefficient lighting throughout their properties, mainly consisting of T8 fluorescent fittings without lighting controls, and also had poor Emergency lighting provision; this needed to be upgraded as part of the scheme, to be fully compliant with BS5266.1.

The entire upgrade programme was funded by the Department for Education MAT (Multi-Academy Trust) Loans Pilot Project and was designed to maximize the benefits of new, energy-efficient lighting and ensure the Academies were fully compliant with emergency lighting regulations.

The approach

Structured framework

Energy saving upgrades in public sector buildings are frequently only achievable with the assistance of Government funding. The key funding available for educational establishments is the Salix scheme.

In May 2017, the Education and Skills Funding Agency launched a MAT Loans Pilot project, to analyse whether interlinking MATs could enable collaborative working to achieve long-term benefits for their estates. The project saw EO Consulting bring together the two trusts on a project to investigate the long-term strategic difference this approach had on their estates.

Energys Group was successful with its tender bid, awarded in June 2017 through the Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation (YPO) framework, to manufacture, supply and install over 15,000 LED light fittings to 12 Academies in the Group, awarded on a mix of price, technical specification, quality and ability to deliver on a very tight timescale.

Tight deadlines & no disruption

Following the award of the tender each site had a full lighting survey carried out, and proposals were submitted over a two week period to the end of June 2017.

A full programme of works upgrading the LED Lighting was commenced in July and completed by November 2017. Where possible, the work was carried out in the summer break or during out of hours in term-time, resulting in no disruption to the operation of the Academies.

Proven efficiency

A range of Energys Group’s New Vision LED Panels, linear LED, downlights, wall-lights, floodlights, high bays and street lights was installed. Over 15,000 light fittings were upgraded to LED across the project. The majority of fittings incorporated individual occupancy and daylight harvesting sensors to maximize the potential energy savings. A 10 year warranty was provided on all fittings.

Massive energy savings across the 12 Academies are being delivered, amounting to 1.7 million kWh per annum, and equating to £190,000 per annum savings, based on a rate of a minimum of 10.5p per kWh.

Useful lessons

The pilot project has provided invaluable lessons for the Trusts themselves, EO Consulting and Energys Group across a wide-range of outcomes, including: delivering greater energy savings than initially forecast; longer-term warranties, and provided proof that frameworks make the process cost effective, repeatable and scalable.

Matt Isherwood, Brooke Weston Trust’s estates director, said: “This is the first project of its kind where two Academy Trusts have joined forces to submit a joint funding and installation bid, enabling us to get better deals from suppliers as we had more buying power when compared to a single trust.

“The project has been so successful that it could be replicated across other multi-academy trusts and we outlined the process, benefits and savings at the Trust Network Conference in April, attended by delegates from more than 100 multi-academy trusts.”

Commenting on the project, Kevin Cox Managing Director, Energys Group said, “This was a major, multi-site project for us; one with very tight deadlines and exacting specifications in order to fulfil the requirements of the individual Academies and those of the funding body. The team did a superb job and many of the lessons learned will stand us in good stead for future multi-site, multi-Academy projects.”

Read the full Case Study here

Energys Group delivers dramatic efficiency improvements for Waltham Forest educational facilities

Next-generation lighting equipment and boiler controls have been installed at the Edinburgh Primary School and Adult Learning Centre operated by Waltham Forest Council.

The energy-saving potential of a large primary school and adult learning centre in the London Borough of Waltham Forest have been transformed thanks to a significant installation of the latest Energys lighting and boiler control technologies. The new solutions – which were financed via Salix through client and site owner/ operator Waltham Forest Council – have also remedied long-running sensor inadequacies and failure problems associated with previous systems.

The starting point for the project was Energys’ approach to Waltham Forest Council’s energy team with information about the long-term cost savings that could be obtained with its latest lighting and boiler control ranges, as well as the relatively short payback period that could be achieved with even the most extensive deployment. As it turned out this proved to be a very timely conversation as the council’s energy manager, Andras Kis, was already considering the po-tential of new technologies to reduce expenditure at both the Edinburgh Primary School and co-located Adult Learning Centre (ALC).

“We were also experiencing issues with the efficiency of the existing lighting and occupancy sensors, with regular fail-ures occurring at both the primary school and the ALC,” says Kis. “Light were often coming on at the wrong time, or were remaining on all the time, leading to considerable inefficiencies. Despite the fittings only being about seven years old, we were starting to incur hefty replacement costs as well as expenses related to maintenance and support.”

Through conversations with the Energys team – who produced detailed forecasts and specification sheets for project-ed site-wide installations – Kis and his team were assured that the new solutions would make an enduring difference to their facilities’ energy consumption patterns. Consequently, a two-phase programme of work was devised to take place during school breaks in early 2018, ensuring a minimum of disruption to personnel and regular activities. Work at the Adult Learning Centre was undertaken shortly beforehand, in December 2017.

Comprehensive energy saving upgrade

At both sites the final specification drew on a broad cross-section of current Energys solutions, with an understandable emphasis on high-efficiency LED-oriented products. The latest LED light fittings were installed widely, in conjunction with motion/occupancy sensors to make sure that lighting was only used when and where it was required – something that certainly hadn’t been the case with the previous lighting systems and sensors.

The project was extensive and covered all areas in the school, including the sports hall, gym, dining halls, kitchens, la-boratories, staff rooms, classrooms, storage areas, toilets and corridors. The new Energys installation also included the latest outdoor and emergency lighting products, replacing ageing systems that were either technically outdated or no longer in warranty. Meanwhile, the deployment at the Adult Learning Centre spread over two floors and encompassed offices, classrooms, reception areas, a cafe and a canteen.

With the programme of work now fully complete, both sites can look forward to payback periods that are expected to be in the region of five years, as well as significant annual savings of approximately £12,000 across the school and Adult Learning Centre. Not only will these new systems bring lasting reductions to annual energy expenditure, they will also play a crucial role in minimising the sites’ carbon footprints.

In addition, the new lighting comes equipped with multi-year warranties, allowing the school and Adult Learning Centre to lower their forecasts for lamp replacements and associated labour. Indeed, staff at both centres report that the en-ergy savings to date are entirely in line with expectations; while there have also been positive comments about the improvements that have been delivered to the quality and consistency of illumination.

Mr Kis concludes with satisfaction that “the project went smoothly and without disruption – as expected. We are achieving the energy savings and technical benefits of the lighting – again as expected. But the most important aspect for me is that the management teams are very happy with the new lighting. And if they’re happy, I’m happy!”

Read the full Case Study here

The Energys July Horizon Scan; futureproofing business for better energy efficiency

The Guardian is reporting that the depth of fuel poverty blighting Britain’s poorest households is expected to worsen because of energy price rises this year.

The latest 2018 price hikes have piled further pressure on the Government’s promises to control costs from the major energy suppliers, some of which are believed to come from the financial burden of rolling out smart meters to enable the UK smart grid.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy forecasts that the fuel poverty gap will expand by 9%, up from £326 in 2016 to £357 in 2018.

The department said the growth would be mainly driven by increases in fuel prices. All the big six energy suppliers, and many of the newer challenger firms, have recently raised prices, blaming an increase in wholesale costs.

German supplier E.ON last week raised its prices for the second time this year. The proportion of households living in fuel poverty in 2016 rose for the second year in a row to 11.1%, or around 2.55m homes.

A Government business department spokesperson told the Guardian: “This government is driving £6bn into tackling the root cause of fuel poverty through energy efficiency upgrades installed in some of our poorest homes over the next 10 years.”

Plainly, such measures can only come as soon as possible. Energy efficiency represents the most available, cost effective way to tackle the issue.

Energys will track the problem, and report back on coming trends.

Energy efficiency scores fixed

In another alarming Guardian report, fears are rising that EPC ratings in the rented sector are being tampered with.

Since the start of April 2018, landlords have been prohibited from renting out sub standard properties that don’t meet minimum energy efficiency requirements.

But Guardian Money saw an example of a flat where the energy efficiency score appears to have been fraudulently changed to allow it to be advertised.

According to letting agent body Arla Propertymark, as many as 300,000 sub standard properties are out there today.

The elephant in the room, says The Guardian, is the exemption; under EPC rules, landlords of F and G rated properties are only required to make the necessary improvements where this can be done at no cost to themselves.

In other words, the ban doesn’t apply if the landlord has been unable to access third party funding.

“This situation is untenable,” comments Kevin Cox, Managing Director, Energys. “If it’s true that EPC in either the commercial, domestic sector, or both is being abused, Government must act.”

Carbon Budget under threat

Finally this month, the Energyst reveals more than eight in ten members of the Energy Institute (EI) think the UK will miss the fifth carbon budget, according to a poll of 406 members.

The EI’s annual barometer poll asks members for their views on key energy topics. It consistently calls for greater focus on energy efficiency to meet energy and climate goals, and this year was no different.

To make up the shortfall on the fifth carbon budget at lowest cost, 49% said government should prioritise energy efficiency, followed by supporting renewable electricity (32%) and decarbonising transport (31%).

The full findings from UK energy professionals are available here.

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Energys Group advises to act before EU Ecodesign lighting updates come into effect

Energys Group Managing Director urges energy, estates and building managers to “avoid delay” and act before EU Ecodesign lighting updates come into effect

Following recent reports that proposed updates to Europe’s Ecodesign laws “will see the effective banning of both tungsten halogen and compact fluorescent as light sources by 2020”, Kevin Cox Managing Director of Energys Group urges EMs/FMs/specifiers/ consultants to push ahead with planned lighting refurbishment as, “the longer they wait, the more they are going to lose.”

Kevin highlights the key factors that could lead to increased costs for customers over the next few years, “including the impact of Brexit on trade tariffs, the rising costs of luminaires, and the changing regulations, all of which could mean replacement costs of luminaires and lamps will be higher in the long term.”

However, rather than waiting until the increasing costs and waste of an ageing system become unsustainable, Kevin urges those responsible for looking after the lighting systems in commercial, industrial and public sector buildings, to take control of the situation sooner rather than later.

“Decision makers and specifiers should avoid delay before it results in a situation where they are unable to find replacement lamps or the costs of basic maintenance become unreasonable. If they seize the initiative by taking advantage of funding today, they will be achieve benefits and savings both in the short- and long-term.”

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June’s Energys Horizon Scan; taking the guessing out of energy efficiency

Mixed messages from the Government on energy efficiency

The Guardian has reported that Britain is seeking to use energy saving data outside its original dates, in order to count towards EU targets.

It writes: ‘Leaked documents seen by the Guardian show Britain is pushing for its 2014 to 2020 timeline to be stretched backwards 4 years, to count “early actions” taken that comply with the efficiency directive.’

Benedek Jávor, the Vice Chair of the European Parliament’s Environment Committee, told the Guardian: “The UK’s proposal is completely mad and undermines the principle of additionality, as well as the overall ambition of the energy efficiency directive.”

The situation as it stands is opaque. A UK Government spokesperson said: “We are asking for clarity on certain energy savings between 2010 and 2013 and agreeing these for the 2020 target. This is not about applying these energy savings post-2020. To suggest otherwise is incorrect and we continue to advocate ambitious future targets.”

But, the British correspondence with the European council, dated 4 May and seen by The Guardian, proposes allowing EU states to count climate actions taken “in any of the four previous or three following years” towards the energy efficiency directive’s annual 1.5% energy savings obligations.

Any “excess energy savings” between 2014 and 2020 “may count towards the fulfilment of obligations between 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2030”, it says.

Energys will monitor the situation, and if necessary report back on changes. What is clear is that energy efficiency legislation must neither be undermined, nor misused.

Buildings sector welcomes clean growth boost

Theresa May has promised that Britain will use new technologies and modern construction practices to at least halve the energy usage of new buildings by 2030.

The pledge came in a speech on Industrial Strategy in May. The Prime Minister said: “By making our buildings more energy efficient and embracing smart technologies, we can slash household energy bills, reduce demand for energy, and meet our targets for carbon reduction.

“By halving the energy use of new buildings, both commercial and residential, we could reduce the energy bills for their occupants by as much as 50%.

“And we will aim to halve the costs of reaching the same standard in existing buildings too. It will be a catalyst for new technologies and more productive methods, which can be exported to a large and growing global market for clean technologies.”

“We very much welcome this development,” commented Kevin Cox, Managing Director, Energys.

“It proves the ongoing shift to low carbon in buildings is both necessary and inevitable. Here at Energys, we stand ready to help the construction sector embed energy efficiency in the buildings of tomorrow.”

Green mortgages become reality

Borrowers will be able to take out a bigger mortgage when buying greener properties for the first time, under a pioneering scheme to encourage energy efficiency, writes The Guardian.

Research has found that factoring in the efficiency of a home into lenders’ affordability calculations could allow them to increase loans by £11,500 because buyers’ electricity and gas bills will be lower.

The new scheme will kick off in Wales; Welsh help-to-buy loans will take into account the energy rating of new-build homes worth up to £300,000.

“There is every chance that this scheme, if extended nationwide, could help improve energy efficiency uptake and offer more people homes,” comments Cox.

“We would also welcome further efficiency improvements in the commercial and public sectors, where powerful laws already exist on energy efficiency and the legality of rented property.”

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