A new World Economic Forum rapport suggests a striking opportunity for businesses: by adopting measures to reduce energy demand, businesses globally could save at least £1.6 Trillion by 2030.
This opportunity holds particular resonance for the UK business landscape. As the UK government demands stronger energy reporting, energy management is not just an operational concern but a strategic imperative.
This indicates a rallying cry for a shift in how energy is perceived and managed. For UK businesses, this translates into a strategic re-evaluation of energy as a resource – not just a cost to be managed, but a key player in the narrative of sustainable and responsible business practice.
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The report, backed by more than 120 global CEOs, arrives as the onus for forward-thinking businesses has shifted towards more aggressive energy reduction strategies.
As governments at COP28 pledged to amplify renewable energy capacity and double the rate of energy efficiency improvement, businesses face a dual challenge and opportunity.
The challenge lies in accelerating the pace of reducing energy intensity – a task demanding a rate at least twice as fast as in previous years. The opportunity, however, is in embracing this as a catalyst for innovation and cost savings.
Practical actions outlined in the report resonate with the needs and capabilities of UK businesses. Employing artificial intelligence to optimise factory line design is not a futuristic dream but a tangible reality that many industries can implement. This approach, coupled with a focus on energy efficiency and value chain collaboration, paves the way for smarter, more sustainable operations. Industrial clustering, another suggestion from the report, offers a collaborative avenue for sharing clean energy initiatives, thus fostering a community of practice and learning among businesses.
The retrofitting of buildings stands out as a particularly pertinent measure for the UK, where much of the commercial infrastructure is aging and energy inefficient. Similarly, the electrification of transport aligns with the UK’s broader environmental goals and offers a clear pathway for businesses to contribute to national carbon reduction targets.
Perhaps the most striking finding is the feasibility of a 31% reduction in energy demand across all economic sectors, achievable through existing technologies. This assertion dismantles the often-cited barrier of the need for groundbreaking technological innovations to make significant strides in energy management. Instead, it posits a more accessible approach, rooted in adopting and scaling current technologies and practices.
Interested in learning more energy efficiency tips? These small behavioural changes can yield big cost savings for your business.
The Transforming Energy Demand report does more than provide a roadmap for energy management; it offers a vision of a future where UK businesses are not just passive consumers of energy but active architects of a more sustainable, efficient, and economically sound energy landscape. This vision, underpinned by practical, achievable measures, sets a new bar for how businesses should approach energy management in the face of global environmental challenges.
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