The days of regulated energy are numbered. Special rates and economic development are moving the industry in the path of deregulation, which is a significant opportunity for Facilities Managers, explains Rita Tatum of FacilitiesNet. Those seeking to do more with less need to know a few things about utility deregulation and its potential implications for capital planning and managing facilities spend.
What’s Wrong With Regulated Energy and Utility Service Providers?
Regulated energy and utility service providers sound like a good idea on paper, but they are exposed to numerous risks. The energy market is susceptible to four primary driving forces of cost, including the economy, weather, natural gas supply, and politics, reports Lisa Cochran. These forces affect the risk energy companies have in offering service with the presumption of being paid back when billing customers. Unfortunately, politics and the economy have a way of swinging regulated energy prices upward. The end result is higher energy costs for businesses. It eliminates the need for competition, so consumers, including corporations, are forced to pay whatever rate the company sets. However, the digital age has transformed how companies get and use energy, and those approaching net-zero energy use should be able to reap significant rewards. Ironically, reaping these rewards will be more straightforward and more cost-effective through utility deregulation.
Utility Deregulation Puts Capital Planning Control Back in the Hands of Facilities Managers
As explained by Greg Zimmerman of FacilitiesNet, the innovations driving better capital planning and overall deregulation of utilities are significant, but the potential savings are much more than meets the eye. Although technology can help companies get to net-zero energy use, few topics carry the potential that accompanies utility deregulation. Deregulated utility service providers encourage participation, or proactive “monitoring and tracking” of energy usage from consumers. In turn, the company can better predict energy demand and adjust output to meet such demand. As a result, rates decrease. This effectively puts the power of budgeting for energy use and selecting the best prices in the hands of Facilities Managers.
Additional Tips to Improve Cost Savings in Conjunction With Deregulation of Utilities
Utility deregulation is a utopia based on competition between service providers. Sadly, it is not available everywhere. So, Facilities Managers need to have a few tricks up their sleeves to keep energy consumption down, opening the door to special rates for low-energy consumers. As explained by FacilitiesNet, such methods might include:
- Reduce vacancy energy use.
- Retro-commissioning or retrofitting facilities.
- Partnering with nearby companies and businesses.
- Reducing unneeded sources of lighting, like those in vending machines.
- Create zones based on energy use.
- Reduce kitchen and food-prep energy use.
- Bring your own transformer, meter, etc.
Leverage the Savings of Utility Deregulation and Real-Time Energy Monitoring Today
Find out if utility deregulation can help transform your operation from a cost-center to profit-center by scheduling your facility condition and energy assessment with ENTOUCH by calling 1-800-820-3511 now. You may also fill out the online contact form, and a representative will call you back as soon as possible.