According to the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, renewable energy sources like solar, wind and biomass made up a 44.6% share of electricity generation in Q2 of 2020. This was both a record high and an increase of 9% compared to Q2 of the previous year.
While these renewable sources contribute to the UK’s national energy infrastructure, there are also several benefits for businesses to make the switch to renewable energy.
In this blog we’ll explore why your organisation can benefit from renewable energy, the benefits of each different source of renewable energy, and how to best utilise it.
Why use renewable energy?
Long-term cost savings
Once you’ve made the initial investment to create a renewable energy infrastructure that is future-proof to meet your current and future needs, you will start to see savings on your power costs. Over-time these savings on overheads and increased margins add up to the point where they provide a tangible return on investment.
A more flexible power infrastructure
By combining robust energy generation and using a behind-the-meter energy storage system, excess electricity generated outside of peak times can be used for later use. This can have significant benefits during peak periods which require more energy than usual, or during times where a blackout may occur and the stored back-up energy can maintain operations until repairs are completed.
Less reliance on national grid energy
Investing in on-site generation methods through renewable energy gives your business the advantage of having a diversified energy portfolio.
In the event of issues with the local or national power infrastructure, you will have a reliable back-up supply of electricity.
Work towards carbon neutrality targets
Many organisations have measures to reduce carbon emissions in their strategy and yearly goals. Reducing the need to draw energy from sources that use fossil fuels can be a big step towards achieving net-zero carbon emission goals.
Types of renewable energy sources businesses can use
Across the world, new methods of harnessing renewable energy sources continue to be developed. However, for businesses solar, wind and biomass continue to be the most commonly used methods.
Here are the advantages of each method of renewable energy generation.
Solar power advantages and disadvantages
Solar power is one of the most common sources of renewable energy within homes.
Solar panel placement can be very flexible. Panels can be placed on roof space and mounted anywhere on the ground. Also, due to the modular nature of solar cells, this renewable energy solution can be tailored to fit the specific needs of each individual site.
Solar panels are an excellent option for sites that have larger expanse of land that sees plenty of exposure to sunlight.
Also, solar panels are able to provide increased long-term savings due to lower ongoing maintenance costs.
Wind power advantages and disadvantages
Wind energy is a very viable alternative energy source due to the UK’s windy climate.
The turbines work by wind hitting angled blades which turns the turbine shaft to convert kinetic energy into electricity.
Unlike solar energy, wind power can be generated at all hours of the day and can be especially effective if a site is on a high point or has a high exposure to wind.
The disadvantages of wind energy lie in the fact that it is intermittent. However, by combining this with an on-site energy storage system, these problems can be mitigated.
Biomass power advantages and disadvantages
Biomass generators work by utilising both wet and dry organic matter to produce energy. They burn dry organic matter such as food waste, wood chippings and other organic by-products, and burn methane gas produced from decomposing organic material.
This then heats water to turn it into steam to then turn a turbine which converts the kinetic energy into usable electricity.
Renewable energy storage
In order to maximise the potential of renewable energy sources for business, you will also need to invest in appropriate on-site energy storage systems.
The more intermittent sources of renewable energy like wind and solar power benefit from this greatly, as the excess energy stored during peak times can be stored for later use and wasted generation is minimised. This can also prevent you from having to export energy back to the electricity grid if you over-generate, as this does not generally provide much financial benefit.
Integrated renewable energy generation and on-site storage systems for business
At Powerstar, we produce and source through our trusted partner network a range of robust solutions to revolutionise your on-site energy infrastructure.
We produce smart technologies that allow you to effectively manage your on-site energy infrastructure to improve performance and efficiency over time.
We and our specialist partners will work closely with you to produce a holistic energy infrastructure that delivers improved power resilience, cost savings and helps achieve net-zero carbon emission targets.
Contact a member of our team to find out more by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling us on 0333 230 1327.