In October 2017, energy and services industry titan, Centrica, released ‘The Resilience Report’. This report examined and measured the impact of energy related failures on businesses and explored the possibilities of creating an energy resilient future. In this article Powerstar presents the key findings of the resilience report.
The theme of the report directly links business resilience with energy resilience due to the significant ramifications businesses have experienced from loss of revenue, to reputational damage and loss of inventory all of which were caused from power failures. An astonishing 81% of Centrica’s participants reported an energy failure caused by factors such as the weather, a supply issue or an equipment failure which iterates the point that energy resilience and business resilience are indeed intertwined.
The first chapter of the report ‘The importance of energy continuity’, aims to highlight the extensive difficulties that can be caused by energy related failures that results in the exposure of the operational weaknesses of a business.
The research undertaken by Centrica uncovered startling statistics such as “32% of organisations do not have any form of energy resilience strategy in place” and that “52% of energy decision makers believe that they will experience an energy related failure within the next year”. These powerful statistics clearly indicate that the threat and disruption caused by energy related failure is either not widely understood or not being taken as seriously as it should be. It also uncovers that although a substantial amount of decision makers believe that that an energy related failure is forthcoming, they do not have a plan in place to combat the consequences of such a failure. This is further exacerbated by the issues discovered in chapter 2.
The second chapter, titled ‘The impact, prevalence and causes of power failures’, examines how much of an affect energy-related failures can have on a business. The findings here are particularly alarming as it states that “18% of energy makers said that an outage of only one day would be catastrophic for their business” and the strong terms in which this is expressed is solidified by the statistic that “energy related failures can total as much as 17% of annual revenues”. To place this in terms of pure numbers, a single energy related failure could cost a company with a revenue of £150,000 as much as £25,500.
The third and final chapter ‘How to address the problem’ explains that an energy resilience plan can protect businesses from outages and market fluctuations but at present, energy resilience remains difficult to articulate and therefore specific plans with measurable targets are a rarity. Whilst this remains the case it seems that the best option for companies in lieu of an extensive, structured energy resilience plan is to invest in leading edge technology that can ensure more resilient processes.
Centrica suggests that there are systems a business can implement that can directly influence the resilience of processes, such as on-site energy solutions.
Energy storage solutions are one example of this, especially those which have full Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) capabilities that negate the need for additional backup. The adoption of energy storage solutions, such as Powerstar’s VIRTUE, for example will increase the preparedness of organisations against energy-related failures and can all together avoid any interruption to the supply, regardless of the cause, due to its intelligent responsiveness that allows the UPS to kick in within a three-millisecond time-frame when a supply issue is detected offering seamless support to the load.
To help businesses further understand the importance of adding security to the supply and improving energy resilience, Powerstar is hosting a series of seminars across the UK throughout 2018 which will cover the aspects of UPS, the future energy network and the decentralised energy network, all of which will impact business and energy resilience.