Solar, call now and get a free set of steak knives

Articles

Solar, call now and get a free set of steak knives

Posted 19 February 2020 by Chris Hargreaves

Making solar part of your business's energy mix has never been more appealing. But risk and opportunity balances between an optimised design and types of PPAs. While there's heat in the market, there are incentives - but don't unthinkingly sign away your business for a free set of steak knives! Or solar panels, for that matter. According to the Electricity Authority, New Zealand's solar energy generation capacity increased to just under 115MW in 2019. Putting this into perspective, 115MW of installed capacity is similar to one of Contact or Mercury's Geothermal stations. As a...
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Big risks in avoiding corporate sustainability

Posted 20 January 2020 by Chris Hargreaves

Your corporate sustainability targets might be in for a shock! Prior to Christmas, the Government announced a raft of proposed changes to the emissions trading scheme (ETS) to rapidly decarbonise the economy. This included lifting the ETS price cap from $25/tonne to $50/tonne and creating a market floor of $20/tonne. If we take natural gas as an example, where at $25/tonne the ETS is priced at $1.37, at the market cap of $50/tonne this would increase the cost of the ETS to end users by $1.37/GJ (0.49c/kWh). With current raw gas pricing hovering around $9/GJ for large...
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How efficient, sustainable energy innovations could boost your brand

Posted 9 January 2020 by Chris Hargreaves

Research shows that using low-carbon energy solutions can improve your reputation – helping make the case for sustainable energy innovation. Deloitte recently published The Global Millennial Survey. This reinforced a number of other surveys that concluded that brands with a strong corporate social responsibly and sustainability plan will attract a higher caliber pool of prospective employees and a large range of engaged customers. 42% of those surveyed stated that they would start and or deepen a relationship with business who has products/services that positively impact the...
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Stale, male and pale.

Posted 11 December 2019 by David Spratt

Behind the times in 2019. How to kill friendships and infuriate younger colleagues. Each Christmas for the last three years I have taken the opportunity to mock colleagues, businesses, politicians and friends in the guise of a bit of festive fun. For me 2019 was a year of progressive transition to a new generation of leaders at work. This warrants a look in the mirror and into the mind of an old guy inadvertently keeping the glass ceiling firmly on top of our young talent.   “I just told you my great idea. Why are you being so difficult about...
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Finalist - Microsoft New Zealand Partner Awards

Posted 5 November 2019 by David Spratt

Total Utilities is proud to have been nominated as a finalist in the 12th annual Microsoft New Zealand Partner Awards. These awards reveal the capability and influence that Microsoft Partners have in empowering customers to create real change and value. As a business we have been known for a number of years for vendor-independent business consulting which enables our customers to make informed and contestable decisions in relation to their migration to Cloud computing. Once the customer embarks on that journey it is crucially important to have the right governance in place to...
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The price of power: monopoly management of the national grid benefits the few

Posted 22 October 2019 by David Spratt

Our national grid pricing needs solutions. And after 10 years of pondering its navel, the Electricity Authority (EA), the Government agency charged with ensuring an efficient and effective electricity industry, plans to release a paper that may or may not gain industry consensus and may or may not actually be the right answer.  A decade in, the EA claims it is past the point where it is seeking an industry consensus, and advises that “you’ll have to show a factual error in our assumptions to change...
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Just a moment: are you feeling okay?

Posted 17 October 2019 by David Spratt

This isn’t an easy article to write. I am over 60 years old and have had a wonderful, successful life full of variety, excitement, joy and challenges. Throughout, I have seen myself as a solid kind of person with an optimistic view of the world and a generally even temperament. Now I find myself admitting to the world that I am not bulletproof after all.   A few weeks ago, I was juggling some pretty big issues at work, at home and in the political realm. That’s not unusual in my world, and for many of us in business this is very...
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“Accelerated Electrification” Misses the Mark on Process Heat

Posted 21 August 2019 by Richard Gardiner

Most of us now agree that climate change is all too real and we therefore all need to do something about it, sooner rather than later.However, some impulsive political changes in the past 18 months, like unilaterally banning all new offshore oil and gas exploration, can be environmentally counter-productive. For example, NZ coal usage in 2018 was the highest for a decade! Undoubtedly, this is a decision our political leaders didnt want to see happen.Wood biomass however is a great renewable resource and therefore represents an important and growing energy solution.At this time, NZ...
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Searching for ecological nirvana in energy supplies

Posted 14 August 2019 by David Spratt

“A society grows great when people plant trees whose shade they know they will never lie in.” - Greek Proverb I spent the best part of Saturday planting trees, flaxes, and ferns along a stream bank with my son, Tom, and his best mate. The task was “wholesome” according to Tom, as the plantings should facilitate the recovery of a stream that was once badly polluted but now runs mostly clear following positive steps by my dairy farmer neighbor to abide by the Fonterra clean stream accords. As I patted my own back for my newly enhanced green credentials, I turned my...
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Sustainability now considered economic and environmental

Posted 7 August 2019 by Chris Hargreaves

New Zealand has set a target under the Paris Agreement to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030, and to adopt increasingly more ambitious targets in the future. Per capita, New Zealand's emissions are one of the highest in the world with an output of <1% of the total world's emissions. Business New Zealand recently released a report which concluded that "opportunities to improve our performance in productivity and renewable penetration lie in every part of the energy supply chain. While productivity and renewables are not necessarily mutually...
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