Articles about Energy

Driving Decisions on Buying Electric Vehicles

Posted 4 April 2018 by David Spratt

Last month’s article on electric vehicles elicited responses ranging from “hippy, coombyah, PC, Greenie horse poo” through to “Where can I get one of these gosh darn, new-fangled, electric buggies?”. Thanks to you all for your feedback. Rather than take sides in the debate about whether or not we should be buying electric vehicles, let’s examine the drivers that inform the decisions we will all make around which vehicles our companies buy. Price Electric vehicles are expensive. Buying electric vehicles today, we can expect to pay BMW prices for Corolla performance. As...
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Infusing New Operational Intelligence into Old Equipment

Posted 23 March 2018 by Jon Rabinowitz

A client of ours recently installed energy sensors across two areas of their facility. One area is significantly old using good practice equipment for the time, the other brand new and utilising advancements in equipment technology. Both areas are similarly sized and perform the same operation, however, measuring energy performance between the old and new will provide our client with real insights when making future strategic decisions. While our client operates a large portfolio of facilities around the North Island, they are using this specific site as a sandbox environment, a...
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Electric Vehicles – Future or Fad?

Posted 2 March 2018 by David Spratt

True story. An employee took the flash new company Electric Vehicle (EV) up North on a sales trip. On the way home, they realised that the battery charge was running out so stopped in a small town to find a charging point. There was, inevitably, no charging station for electric vehicles so they rang the tow company and got a ride home alongside a towie with bad breath and even worse body odour. Back at work, the boss pointed out the switch that turned the hybrid vehicle back to petrol power.   My point? Electric Vehicles (EV’s) are still a bit of a mystery both to their users...
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How to Unleash the Value of Sensors and Big Data

Posted 16 February 2018 by Jon Rabinowitz

In the past couple of years, we have written a lot of commentary about how the world of IT and the world of Energy are converging. As more and more companies are choosing not to own and operate their IT, the role of IT departments is fast moving away from just technical support towards strategic thinking informed by data analysis. The same can be said for Energy as companies gain access to wireless energy monitoring via cloud-based analytics, CIO's and IT managers have equal interest as COO's and plant managers as the Internet of Things is rolled out. The convergence of data across all...
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Leaking air, leaking bottom line: top money-saving tips

Posted 12 December 2017 by Chris Hargreaves

The following was published in the NZ Herald 25th of November 2017 and includes energy tips from Total Utilities' own Pushkar Kulkarni who reveals how leaking air wastes money. Four energy experts offer top tips to save money Running an air-conditioning unit at full tilt to cool down one part of a building, while a boiler blazes away to heat another part of that same building, sounds like madness - but it's surprisingly common in New Zealand's commercial buildings. It's just one of the ways businesses are squandering energy, and therefore money, in the course of their day-to-day...
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Watercare House Case Study: Anchor tenant scores a NABERSNZ excellent rating for energy use

Posted 7 December 2017 by Chris Hargreaves

Pushkar Kulkarni from Total Utilities completed the site review and NABERSNZ Assessment of Watercare House. Here he provides additional commentary to the original published case study, highlighting the specific benefits of a NABERSNZ tenancy rating. "A NABERSNZ tenancy rating is an ideal tool for tenants as it shows them how their day to day operations impact their energy performance. It can also determine how well they manage energy and identify the opportunities that may exist to improve energy performance. In an increasingly competitive market place and businesses look for a point of...
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Sustainable cost reductions – No, I’m not talking price

Posted 5 December 2017 by Chris Hargreaves

Cost reduction in the energy market through procurement has been relatively easy in the last few years. Flat national demand, solid hydro storage, increased retailer competition and participation in the ASX market has led to competitive commercial contracts that have allowed many customers to save money without changing what they are doing. While an immediate impact, it is not sustainable. Fixed price contracts are typically only 2-3 years in length and only relate to +/- 65% of a total bill, changes in transmission and distribution pricing is passed through at cost by the retailers and...
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What is Power Factor: This Overlooked Charge Could Be Costing You Dearly

Posted 26 September 2017 by Chris Hargreaves

What is Power Factor and why is it Important? Power Factor is an electrical term that is the measurement of how efficient energy consuming equipment translate that energy into a useful output. It is measured by the ratio (>0 and <1) between apparent power (kVA) and real power (kW), where apparent power is the amount of energy required to deliver a required output. Power Factor should be as close to 1 as possible (above 0.95) so that apparent power and real power are nearly the same. This means that nearly all the energy consumed is translated into a useful output. An analogy of this...
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The Fourth Industrial Revolution

Posted 24 July 2017 by David Spratt

The boundaries between physical, digital and biological worlds are breaking down — giving way to a new world of computer based business known as cyber-physical systems. These cyber-physical systems are characterized by the merging of physical, digital, and biological realms in profound ways. Artificial intelligence (AI) serves as the primary catalyst of this transformation. Klaus Schwab, Chairman and Founder of the World Economic Forum wrote: We are at the beginning of a revolution that is fundamentally changing the way we live, work, and relate to one another. In its scale, scope and...
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The Smarter Smart Energy Meter

Posted 22 July 2017 by Pushkar Kulkarni

Investment in energy monitoring has traditionally been dominated by lengthy CAPEX discussions and the technical specifications of proposed monitoring infrastructure which means spending more cash to find out where cost savings might be made. Little thought was ever given to the data output and associated software --most competing products delivered similar back end services and data displays which required users to export data to CSV format before being able to really interrogate it. That's changing with Panoramic Power smart sensors available now in New Zealand, through Total...
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