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White Paper

Towards energy resilience: closing the efficiency gap

Co-written by Capitas Finance and Alfa, Towards energy resilience: closing the efficiency gap explains the powerful drivers for businesses to cut their greenhouse gas emissions and underlying energy use – and the equally powerful barriers preventing them from implementing decarbonisation projects.

At present, the energy market is volatile, with uncertainties in energy supply and price spikes negatively impacting both businesses and consumers. We are also in the midst of the greatest climate emergency ever faced. Thus, the need for businesses to reduce their carbon footprint and become energy efficient is paramount. However, many are still a long way from meeting their net zero targets.

In this paper, we explore how companies have responded to the challenging energy market; their plans for energy efficiency; the issues they face; and opportunities for change that minimise cost and risk. These include utilising new funding models, such as Energy as a Service, and finding support in an agile software platform.

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  • The energy efficiency gap

    There is a clear disconnect between what businesses say they want to do and what they are actually doing.

  • The energy efficiency gap

    The combined electricity demand of the corporates signed up to the RE100 pledge is greater than the UK’s entire electricity usage.

  • The energy efficiency gap

    Market interventions are needed because businesses don’t act rationally.

Five things we know about medium-sized businesses and energy

  • 1

    These businesses usually have energy bills of £100k+ p/a and recognise that saving even a small proportion of this could be a substantial sum. But this does not always translate into action.

  • 2

    Some claim to be making behavioural changes, but few are actually investing in measures such as upgrading lighting systems, heating controls and so on.

  • 3

    The biggest barrier to investing in serious energy efficiency measures appears to be the high upfront cost.

  • 4

    A minority have looked into generating their own energy, but are discouraged by factors such as planning permission, length of payback period and amount of energy generated.

  • 5

    The pandemic has pushed many businesses into "survival mode" where the focus is on immediate concerns. Energy efficiency is not a priority.

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    Towards energy resilience: closing the efficiency gap

    Download the Paper