Energy efficiency is becoming a more significant concern globally. This is because of its connection to greenhouse gases, increase in energy demand, and climate change. One of the best ways of improving energy efficiency is to devise an effective energy management system. This involves various measures that bring energy usage to a minimum level.
Ideally, energy management lets you discover potential energy savings and deduce measures. Additionally, it helps you make appropriate decisions for your construction business to run efficiently. With that in mind, here’s a brief guide on energy management in a construction site.
Importance of energy management in construction site
Energy management in construction sites offers some benefits, including the following:
1. Improved construction process
With effective energy management processes, you can monitor all areas of the construction site. So, in case of any issues, you can address them immediately and ensure your construction activities proceed at optimum levels.
Moreover, you can have a constant supply of fuel. Suppose you run out of fuel but don’t have an instant plan for refueling. You’ll have to deal with unexpected downtime, which can cost you significantly. For extra security, prepare an emergency fuel delivery order to keep your activities running smoothly and at total capacity during emergencies.
2. Low cost
Effective energy management enables you to monitor your energy usage and solve issues that lead to waste. This lowers consumption, energy costs, and overall construction costs.
3. Reduced pollution
According to Forbes, approximately 40% of global carbon dioxide emissions originate from the real estate sector. Nearly 70% of these emissions come from building activities, while 30% are from construction. When you manage energy well, you lower its usage and thus the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the air and increase the sustainability of your working environment.
4. Minimized risks
Massive energy consumption can lead to energy scarcity, resulting in increased prices and severely affecting your profit. With energy management solutions, you can minimize this risk by lowering your energy usage and controlling it to make it more anticipated.
How to lower energy consumption on the construction site
The energy emitted from buildings and the construction sector is immense and keeps increasing. It accounts for 30% of the worldwide final energy consumption and 27% of the whole energy sector emissions. For this reason, optimizing energy consumption is needed to conserve usage during construction. Here are some methods on how you can achieve this:
1. Utilize machines effectively
Almost all construction sites require machinery to build and maintain a safe and effective working environment. The equipment you use depends on the type and extent of your project. Some of them can consume a lot of energy. For example, construction vehicles use fuel to prepare the site, transport materials, and build structures. Furthermore, concrete mixers, haul trucks, construction cranes, and excavators require much power. If you don’t use these machines well, they can lead to high energy usage.
To lower energy consumption, reduce the idle and stand-by time of machinery. Don’t use energy-consuming equipment where other construction materials can work. For instance, use trolleys to move building materials for short distances. Lastly, use every piece of equipment for its intended purpose and maintain it according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
2. Master efficient site management
One significant inhibition of energy conservation in the construction process is ineffective site management. You may need to control many things and machines on the construction site. When you know how to do that efficiently, you can lower and save a lot of energy usage.
So, learn about effective site management, maintenance of equipment, and the right choice of machines for their intended purposes. This way, you boost energy efficiency and lower energy costs and the overall cost of construction.
3. Lower the use of fuel
Construction operations utilize a large amount of energy in different forms. Some effective forms are electricity, gas, diesel, and petrol, each used for other construction purposes. For example, petrol is used to power small petrol engines, and electricity is used to operate almost all power tools. To manage fuel consumption, ensure all machines that use fuel are effectively used. You should also maintain the equipment regularly to ensure they don’t use excess fuel.
4. Train your staff
The people who interact primarily with machines on the construction site are your workers. Some of them may not be well-versed in energy conservation. For this reason, go the extra mile to educate your employees on the various energy-saving methods. Doing so enhances energy saving on the construction site.
How to manage energy in a construction site
Below are some essential tips when setting up a successful energy management strategy:
- Hire an energy manager.
- Carry out an energy survey to identify the areas you can save energy.
- Understand your current energy usage.
- Create an action plan you’ll follow to attain your goals.
- Frequently check your performance to ensure you’re making progress toward your goals.
Don’t forget to involve your staff at all levels in crucial decision-making. This lets everyone on the construction site contribute to energy management and improve efficiency.
An efficient energy management system benefits your construction activities and the environment. It influences the entire company, employees’ behavior, and energy consumption levels. Thus, it’s vital to plan and implement strategies that help you manage fuel usage and boost energy efficiency and conservation. With strategies in place, you can minimize gas emissions and improve the sustainability of your work environment.