As I’ve observed organisations that are successful in reducing their carbon emissions in an on-going way I’ve noticed that they all have three things in place before they begin to significantly cut their carbon:
Leadership commitment. More often that not the most senior level managers will be on the environmental steering committee.
A system in place for accurately measuring and tracking their emissions. They measure what they treasure – in this case their carbon savings.
Wider commitment in their workplace to emissions reduction.
With these three pre-requisites in place these organisations are more likely to move forward to actually cut their carbon pollution.
Carbonetix has developed a website to assist its certified Mirrorlux installers and distributors with sales, marketing and installation activities. Mirorrlux provides an opportunity for Electrical Contracting and Facility Management businesses to build additional business by offering Delamping Services which can halve their customer’s lighting energy use.
The site has been developed to assist Mirrorlux distributors maximise the sales opportunities that exist to halve the lighting costs of their existing and prospective customers.
The resources included there are:
· Training videos and manuals to help you learn about Mirrorlux Reflectors.
· Promtional material to help you market and sell the Mirrorlux solution.
· A proposal generator and tracking system.
· Ordering and tracking system.
· A savings calculator.
· General news and updates.
If you would like to register to become a certified Mirrorlux installer/sales agent please go http://www.mirrorlux.com.au/ and click under the Distributor Login button.
A comfortable office temperature doesn’t depend just on the temperature, there are other factors that come into play. These include the relative humidity, the temperature of surrounding surfaces and the speed of any air movements.
Craig Ryan of Johnson Controls has prompted this second posting with some good observations about humidity and comfort on my first posting on a comfortable office temperature.
The more humid it is, the higher the temperature feels. This is shown in the thermal comfort chart below.
thermal comfort diagram - humidity vs temperature
In climates which are always hot, or climates that are mostly cold, our bodies acclimatise somewhat to these conditions. The chart above is most appropriate for cooler rather than hot climates.
Moving air makes it feel colder. When its hot creating air movement (eg through fans) can mean that air conditioning systems can be set to provide higher temperatures than would otherwise be the case.
Radiant temperatures of nearby surfaces also make us feel warmer or colder. Because of this sitting next to a large window in winter may still feel cold even though the inside air temperature is 22 degrees Celcius.
By operating heating and cooling systems out to the limits of what is perceived to be a comfortable temperature significant energy and greenhouse gas savings can be achieved. Attention also needs to be paid to air movement and surface radiant temperatures.
I received yesterday a powerpoint about food security and climate change from Dr. Julie Cliff, a friend of mine who has worked in tropical medicine in Mozambique for the last 30 years. Her powerpoint had a dramatic image of cassava plants grown in laboratory conditions at different atmospheric concentrations of CO2 (shown below). Cassava is a staple crop whose tubers are consumed across southern and central Africa. The plants grown at higher concentrations of CO2 produced tubers with less than half of the useful food of the plants grown at lower CO2 concentration.
Cassava tuber growth at different CO2 concentrations
Yesterday I also met an economist who showed me some modelling that predicted the effect a $50 per tonne carbon price would have on the cost of employment across a range of sectors, such as manufacturing, banking and insurance, etc. Typically the cost was around $2,000 per employee – or in other words the modelling was predicting that business expenses would increase by $2,000 per employee if we had a carbon price of $50 a tonne.
These two viewpoints clearly show the apparent climate change challenge – one which shows that the response to climate change could be expensive, the other that not acting could have dire consequences for food security in southern and central Africa. This is the classic argument that I referred to in my first blog post – the climate change challenge is framed in a way that we lose economically if we act to limit greenhouse gas emissions now – but if we don’t act we will lose in the future.
So what is my climate positive take on this? More in my next posting – and comments welcome.
Last weekend six solar tube skylights were installed in our office, which occupies the top floor of a two storey building. The skylights have eliminated the need for artificial lighting in thirteen of our work spaces.
It was amazing watching the reaction of staff as they came in this morning, many couldn’t contain their excitement. “Its so much brighter.” “The quality of light is fantastic.” “We don’t need the lights on at all.”
The cost installed was $5,550. Our landlord agreed to pay half of the costs. As we were pretty frugal with our lighting to start with, and it was already efficient, the lighting energy cost savings won’t be large, in the order of $500 a year. We may have to run the air conditioner more in summer because of the heat gain from the skylights, but this may also cut heating energy use in winter. Assuming it balances out the payback for us as tenants will probably be around 5 to 6 years in terms of energy savings. However daylight also makes the workplace more attractive, and may improve productivity. So there will be other benefits in addition to the cost savings. And of course the greenhouse gas savings will reduce the amount of green-power we need to purchase. If we were buying black power the skylights would be expected to save us around 2.5 tonnes of greenhouse gas a year.