The EMA Magazine I May-June 2019

Charlie Cox, Energy Manager, University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust

Charlie Cox Energy Manager University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust

As Energy Managers, or people with responsibility for energy management in big organisations, we sometimes fear being dismissed as tree-huggers, so might be tempted to hide the carbon savings at the back of a business-case, or even leave them out altogether.

Of course, whether you are answering to shareholders in a private company, or spending public money in an organisation like mine, the finances have got to stack up. However, I don’t think we should shy away from hammering home the environmental message either.

It seems to me that more and more people are becoming aware of the impact that humans are having on the rocky ball that we’re hurtling through space on. I’m sure most readers will be aware that there is no longer really a debate amongst scientists about whether climate change is at least partially man-made, but the arguments roll on in realms of politics and public opinion. I believe that the tide is turning though. A recent survey suggests that single-use plastic consumption has reduced by 53% due to the “Attenborough Effect” of people seeing awful images of plastic waste polluting otherwise pristine habitats on the Blue Planet II series.

With Sir David Attenborough having recently turned his unparalleled broadcasting skills to communicating the facts about Climate Change, we can expect a further increase in public concern for this area. However, if the public response to the recent Extinction Rebellion protests in London have taught us anything, it is that the public wants something done about environmental issues, but that they don’t want to be inconvenienced in the process.

The opportunity for Energy Managers is clear. Our shareholders, customers and service users want to “do their bit” without having to change their lifestyle too much. Our businesses, brands and organisations can tap into this by demonstrating a real commitment to carbon emission reductions so that they become the easy route to reducing personal carbon footprints.

With the help of the EMA’s training resources, Energy Managers can identify, champion and deliver projects that will not only save money for their stakeholders but will also enable them to feel good about their relationship with the planet.

Published 6 times a year, THE EMA MAGAZINE covers news and features related to energy management, sustainability, environment and climate change.

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