Research published by COSBOA illustrates how focused small business owners are on reducing the cost of their energy bills.

Over half of the small businesses surveyed in the Council of Small Business Organisations Australia (COSBOA) research stated that they will struggle to cope if utility prices rise. 

“This is a fundamental issue that needs to be addressed as quickly as possible, Australian small business represents 97% of all businesses operating in Australia,” said Peter Strong, chief executive of COSBOA in a recent statement. 

Reliable energy supply is often taken for granted, however it’s vital to the operation of all Australian businesses. AEMO’s recently published report, the Electricity Statement of Opportunity (ESOO), highlighted this along with an analysis of business sector electricity consumption. It forecasted an increase in heating and cooling requirements, and for smaller businesses also computer hardware, data storage, and business-related appliances. The ESOO indicated that this increase in consumption will be counterbalanced by more efficient appliances and a projected uplift in commercial rooftop solar installations. Smaller industrial sectors will also see some growth in smart manufacturing, which is relatively less energy intensive than Australia’s traditional manufacturing base.   

AEMO surveyed a number of businesses, as part of its forecast process, and found that many are actively managing their energy costs through competitive tendering for their supply, installation of Solar PV, or comprehensive energy efficiency plans which deliver savings in the short term. 

The energy industry is being transformed by technological advancements like these which are changing the generation mix and creating opportunities for increased engagement in terms of choice and energy supply solutions. This increased mix and variety of energy supply and storage will present Australian businesses and consumers alike with more options at more competitive prices.  

The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science has provided some advice to help businesses manage their energy usage more effectively:

  • Install automatic doors.
  • Buy energy efficient light bulbs and install timers for lighting.
  • Consider more energy efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems and use the thermostat to automate temperatures.
  • For businesses that use more energy such as offices, hotels and data centres, consider systems that generate heating, cooling and power such as cogeneration or tri-generation technology.
  • Installing solar systems to generate your own electricity or heat pumps to reduce your electricity consumption.
  • See how you can improve your National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS) energy rating and save money on your energy bills on the NABERS website.