Businesses rely on heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems to provide a comfortable environment that allows employees to be productive, healthy and efficient. But for many, the replacement of a commercial heating system can seem a daunting expense without an immediately obvious return on the investment.
Old, inefficient boilers can drastically increase the cost of commercial energy, which makes a big difference to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), as heating already accounts for around half of their total energy consumption. These boilers also contribute to rising indoor and outdoor pollution levels, which is why the mayor of London has made replacement of outdated equipment a priority.
Addressing Air Quality
Set to begin this spring, the commercial boiler scrappage scheme will see small businesses in the capital offered grants to replace older boilers. A total of £10 million is available, which the mayor’s office hopes will lead many SMEs to switch to modern heating systems with a lower impact on the environment.
According to the Local Enterprise Partnership for London, nitrogen oxide emissions from commercial gas consumption are set to grow as proportion of central London’s emissions, from 30% in 2013 to over 40% by 2020. Significant action is therefore needed to improve air quality and the scrappage scheme is expected to be a popular measure.
The funding comes as part of a £34 million programme for the capital, support for public sector building managers and for homeowners living in fuel poverty. “It’s a sad fact that for many Londoners keeping their homes warm during the cold winter months is a luxury they simply cannot afford,” said mayor Sadiq Khan.
“My Energy for Londoners scheme aims to help those most in need with grants for new boilers, windows and home insulation to help cut fuel bills. I’m also working on a number of ambitious projects to generate more local clean energy to power our homes, businesses and communities.”
More than a third of London’s commercial properties awarded an Energy Performance Certificate since 2009 received low ratings of E, F or G, so the opportunity to receive support for improvements is likely to be welcome.
Some businesses see commercial heating upgrades as a daunting task with the potential to shut down operations, but an experienced contractor can work with and around employees to help minimise disruption. The key is to find a partner that understands your business and your people, so they can design and install a system that will keep you operating safely and efficiently for years to come.