Energy prices fell by almost 7% between the first and second quarters of this year – overall 4% lower than the same period last year – latest data from the Lorien Energy Index (LEI) has revealed.
The Energy Index, which is produced by Lorien Engineering Solutions, monitors the overall cost of energy for business users. It enables companies of all sizes to make sense of their current energy consumption and look at ways they can make savings in the future, by being energy efficient and utilising low carbon and renewable technologies to boost energy security.
The UK reached a major energy production milestone on the back of Hurricane Gonzalo – wind turbines out-produced nuclear power plants on Tuesday 21 October – and a few days earlier, the wind energy sector set a daily production record, generating 6,372 megawatts and accounting for a fifth of the UK’s energy needs.
Lorien’s sustainability consultant Tom Jordan said: “While extreme weather conditions and issues with the four EDF nuclear energy plants no doubt contributed to these milestones, widespread reporting in mainstream media is a positive indication of a growing recognition of the renewables sector and its contribution to the UK’s energy supply. Indeed, grid parity for solar and wind technologies are now being reported as achievable within the next decade.”
October also saw the protracted tumble in oil prices continue, with the market not yet united on whether the ‘bottom’ has been reached or if weak global growth and ‘ample’ supplies will see further falls. Brent crude has reached $85 per barrel, its lowest since 2010.
Tom Jordan continued: “For businesses, there is an opportunity to invest in energy efficiency initiatives, particularly against the current backdrop of falling costs for renewables and low carbon technologies, and the potential for a period of fossil derived energy price stability.”
More than 10,000 ‘larger organisations’ in the UK will be affected by the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) requirements, which mandate that all large businesses in the UK undertake comprehensive assessments of energy use and energy efficiency opportunities at least once every four years. The deadline for the first compliance period is 5 December 2015, by which time qualifying businesses will have to achieve compliance with the regulations and notify the Environment Agency.
Tom Jordan said: “ESOS has been welcomed as a move away from supplier-led incentivised ‘free’ energy audits towards unbiased assessments. It further poses an excellent opportunity to engage from grass roots to board level, with a requirement for Director-level sign-off of the report prior to submission to the Environment Agency.
“We have been carrying out successful energy reduction projects on behalf of clients for many years. Now, with staff confirmed on the approved register for Lead Assessors, we are looking forward to helping them capitalise on the opportunity ESOS presents to justify and realise energy efficiency projects at their sites”.
Lorien Engineering Solutions is part of GP Strategies Corporation, a global performance improvement solutions provider of training, eLearning solutions, and management consulting and engineering services. The acquisition of Lorien Engineering Solutions adds to GP Strategies’ growing coverage of the sustainability sector.
Lorien Engineering Solutions (LES) is an engineering design and project management organization. With operations in Burton on Trent UK and Wroc?aw Poland, the company has a staff of circa 85 specialists who design and deliver manufacturing projects in the brewing, drinks, food and life sciences industries. LES is recognized as being the UK’s top engineering projects company in the Food & Drinks manufacturing sector. Other areas of specialism are sustainable energy schemes, waste to wealth, manufacturing performance improvement, and health & safety compliance.