This project focused on the development and delivery of easy-to-implement energy efficiency actions for small and medium businesses (SMEs) across northern metropolitan Melbourne. AEF was funded by the Federal Government’s Energy Efficiency Information Grants (EEIG) program to deliver accessible and useful information on energy efficiency to SMEs in six languages. The project was supported by the Northern Alliance for Greenhouse Action (NAGA) local government members. AEF developed engaging information products (factsheets, case studies and videos) and reached out to four key employment sectors – accommodation, retail, food services and professional/technical services. The information produced was translated into six languages- Arabic, Turkish, Vietnamese, Chinese (Mandarin), Italian and Greek. It was disseminated through AEF’s direct contact with SMEs, economic development units of NAGA local government members and the VECCI’s distribution network. AEF trained Environment Health Officers in local government and community workers within peak agencies in the six language groups to engage
One of the most common arguments against renewable energy (particularly solar) is its inability to provide baseload generation. Here Comes the Sun sought to address this issue by investigating the viability of microgrids. This means that small communities can install solar arrays with excess generating capacity and store any excess generation in batteries. The stored electricity can be used when the community’s solar arrays are not generating enough energy to meet its needs. AEF used a combination of research tools including: Energy demand profile modelling Financial cost-benefit modelling Consumer surveys Interviews and focus groups Logistical analysis A legal, regulatory and policy review Stakeholder consultation. The project investigated how microgrids can result in: More solar energy deployment than a business as usual scenario Reduced cost per participating household An optimised demand profile, in network terms. The project was initiated by AEF, funded by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and delivered by AEF
The Clean Energy Council contracted AEF to develop a guide to equip small and medium enterprises with the knowledge to better manage their electricity use. This includes how to understand electricity tariffs and daily electricity consumption profiles. The guide details targeted actions to effect demand-side management solutions and how they might be of financial benefit to specific business types. Partner and funding The project was undertaken with partners Entura, who undertook a background study to support the guide. It was part of a suite of Clean Energy Council projects funded through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency. The guide is now available online.