SustainSuccess team achieve top score

Posted by on Jun 24, 2016 in News, Uncategorized | 0 comments

It is with pleasure that we can report that SustainSuccess Consultants have scored top in an evaluation of energy efficiency services to the Greater Manchester Growth Hub. Our team, Jane Galloway and Bob Bailey, scored top as reported by the bid manager.

scores

The table above is taken from the letter notifying us of our successful bid. The Company Score rates SustainSuccess as an organisation; the Price Score rates our fee rates; “Question 9.1” documents our approach to Environmental Assessments for businesses; and the Individual TS Score rates the capabilities of each team member. 10 individuals were placed on the panel, although many more applied.

Well done folks!

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SustainSuccess Expands!

Posted by on Apr 1, 2016 in News | 0 comments

janegallowayWe are delighted to announce that SustainSuccess has expended. Jane Galloway joined the company on the 1st April 2016, becoming a Director and Shareholder in SustainSuccess Ltd.

Jane Galloway has over 25 years’ experience in energy efficiency and low carbon energy consulting, spanning in-depth audits, technology assessments and solutions development through to operational, strategic and management aspects of energy use. Her strong technical expertise complements the program and organisational skills that the existing Director, Niall Enright has to offer.

She has worked across a wide range of sectors and with many established, as well as emerging, technologies, so she is able to bring to projects practical insights that can add substantial value. Her attention to detail, the rigour with which she approaches projects and the integrity of her advice are greatly appreciated by clients and colleagues.

She has particular expertise in complex industrial process environments, especially in the food and drink sector and food retail establishments in the commercial sector. In terms of technologies, Jane’s experience is wide-ranging: however she is especially strong in all aspects of refrigeration. Work in refrigeration has included energy reduction programs, refrigerant phase out strategy studies, performance specification for new plant, cooling load assessments, modelling and strategy studies.

Complementing this strong engineering competency, is an equal knowledge of the management and organisational aspects of energy use, which are increasingly seen as the key to successful energy efficiency and carbon management programs. This expertise includes an in-depth understanding of Monitoring and Targeting (or M&T, a technique to achieve continuous improvement in energy use), through to the integration of energy efficiency within wider organisational systems such as TPM.

Jane has developed and presented an extensive portfolio of training and workshop materials, covering subjects including refrigeration, audit techniques and M&T.

Please follow the link to Jane’s CV page for more information.

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Dubai Sustainable Cities Summit

Posted by on Dec 20, 2015 in Articles, News, Uncategorized | 0 comments

dscslogo

Niall Enright was honoured to present at a panel at the Dubai Sustainable Cities Summit on the theme of Behaviour. Fellow panellists were: Sam Adams, Director, U.S. Climate Initiative at World Resources Institute; former Mayor of Portland, Oregon; Romilly Madew, CEO GBC Australia; Dr. Abdulla Al Karam, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Director General of KHDA; Giovanni Schiuma, Deputy Mayor of Matera, European Cultural Capital 2019.

Niall’s introductory comments focused on the need to avoid over-simplification in change programs, emphasized by the “does not equal” symbol “≠”. Below is a complementary paper which places these observations in the context of Dubai’s ambitious energy efficiency programmes:

Thinking of change as a science

In 2004, the Canadian government spent CAN$37m on “The One-ton Challenge” to encourage Canadians to reduce their emissions by one tonne of CO2 each, or 20%. It succeeded in raising awareness of climate issues from around 6% to 51%, but few people changed their behaviour as a result.

Unfortunately, this is just one example of dozens of behaviour change programmes that have disappointed. The landscape of sustainable behaviour change is littered with failure. Contrary to our expectations:

dscs_enright_behaviour

 

So what does this mean for Dubai, which has great aspirations to become a leader in sustainability?

Dubai has set itself the objectives of a 30% reduction in energy use by 2030 and a 40% reduction in water. The eight programmes in the Demand Side Management strategy are clearly carefully considered, focusing primarily on technology upgrades to achieve this demand reduction.

The DSM programme reminds us that cities have three fundamental levers for change: People (their decisions and behaviours), Systems (the norms, incentives, standards, information and feedback that drives behaviour and controls) and Technology (the efficiency of the equipment in delivering the required service).

balance

The illustration above makes two key points. The first we have already touched upon and is shown on the left: changing aspects people’s awareness and motivation alone are not guaranteed to deliver improvement.

The second figure reminds us that technology alone is not a solution. Many technology programmes miss their expected target because people are not properly considered in the project.

It is great to see that the Dubai DSM strategy has public awareness as one of the implementation mechanisms supporting the eight programmes of work. So public engagement, and presumably, behaviour change is built into the strategy. This makes absolute sense. For example, the appliance, labelling scheme and demand-side response DSM programmes depend on people making rational choices.

I note too that over 60% of all building energy use in Dubai is due to cooling. A 2oC increase in the thermostat could achieve 16% reduction in energy consumption. So a good behaviour change programme could deliver a very significant contribution to the overall target, and at comparatively low cost.

Which brings us back to history. As my fellow countryman Winston Churchill, once observed:

“Those that fail to learn from history, are doomed to repeat it.”

The error of history that we need to avoid is a failure to incorporate the lessons from psychology, social sciences and behavioural economics into the design of behaviour programme. The Canadians could have prevented their costly mistake if they had heeded an earlier study that showed that US$200m of expenditure in California had failed to reduce energy use a decade earlier. That study made the recommendation that advertising should not be used alone to drive change.

So what else does the scientific literature tell us?

It tells us that, like information, attitudes have surprisingly little bearing on behaviour, and that advertising simply cannot create new behaviours. Furthermore, there is no “virtuous escalator” of improvement. Asking people to make small changes (such as changing to LED lights) does not lead to bigger changes (such as installing solar PV). If you ask people to do little, you get a programme that achieves little. When people’s motivation to change is financial, then we should not expect to see further environmental behaviours from them.

The literature also tells us what does work. We know that the messages that fail in the mass media can work if delivered through a community context or, better still, face-to-face. If we combine feedback and information we see some effect, and when combined with a goal, even more and when that goal is ambitious there is an even stronger effect and if the goal has been set by the individual it is even more powerful. We know that the effect of feedback increases with frequency and by getting people to measure the improvement for themselves (called “re-materialization” by psychologists).

We know that changing occasional behaviours is easier than changing habitual behaviours. Thus, product labelling is effective because buying a TV or fridge is occasional and so people consider information in making the decision. We have evidence that changing from an A to G rating to an A++ to D rating in the EU rating substantially weakened the desirability of the top rating through psychological effects called “anchoring” and “loss aversion”.

How we frame our request has a much bigger impact that we ever suspected. For example in a large US study, when people were told that their energy consumption was higher than the average they behaved by reducing energy use, but when told that it was lower than average, their response was to increase use. The same study showed that this response could be eliminated by putting a positive message in the form of a simple smiley-face next to the savings information. These effects are due to the way that norms influence choices (the first case is the “descriptive norm” that sets the normal level and the second an “injunctive norm” that reinforces low consumption as socially desirable).

Simply put we need to treat the people aspect of our programme as a science and not an art. Since many aspects of human behaviour are counter-intuitive, the key to success is to design our behaviour change strategies scientifically and test these using the great body of knowledge that exists in the scientific literature.

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Peel achieves UK’s first ISO 50001 for a major property company

Posted by on Sep 24, 2015 in Articles, News | 0 comments

50001-energy-management_newThe energy management system of  Peel Land and Property has recently completed certification to the prestigious ISO 50001 standard. As far as we are aware, it is the first major UK property and development organisation to achieve this accolade. Just to give some scale to the scope, the portfolio of assets certified include 1.2m m2 of property, including prestige offices in Liverpool, Manchester and elsewhere in the UK; the MediaCityUK development in Salford, home to the BBC, ITV and dock10 studios; The Lowry and Gloucester Quays Retail Outlets; EventCity, the second largest exhibition space outside of London; Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield and Durham Tees Valley Airport as well as extensive residential, industrial warehousing and retail park space.

SustainSuccess have been involved throughout in a consulting and mentoring role, writing the system specifications, supporting the implementation of the requirements, undertaking Energy Reviews, establishing the internal audit processes and steering the independent certification by Lucideon to a successful conclusion. The key to success was that the Peel Group already had a very effective energy management process in place, with committed Board level support, dedicated and professional Energy Champions for each business and Verco’s Carbon Desktop as the tool to capture energy data and improvement opportunities. Over the past four years this energy management programme has delivered over £1m of savings per year (against a bill of around £3.5m).

Commenting on the certification Niall Enright says “Despite the scale of the organisation, this has to be one of the leanest ISO 50001 systems around with the entire process is described in just 38 pages of text, albeit two-sided. This keep-it-simple outlook is very much in line with Peel’s efficient style of working and highly empowered and capable staff. Because so much good energy efficiency practice was already in place, the effort to achieve 50001 was one largely focused on documenting this practice and ensuring that all the requirements of 50001 were met. In 4 days on-site auditing there was only one minor recommendation from the certifier – that was that we did not investigate the positive variances in energy use (in other words the green traffic lights) as much as the negative variances (the red traffic lights). To have just one minor recommendation is virtually unheard-of. It really is a first class result, for which the Peel team should be very proud and which SustainSuccess is delighted to have supported.”

This is not Peel’s first accolade. Peel Group had previously been certified twice to the Carbon Trust Standard, and was benchmarked top of 29 property managers and developers by the Trust. The MediaCityUK was a pilot for the BREEAM Communities certification and scored more than the other pilot, the London Olympics site. Since then the Lowry has received a Green Apple award for its environmental efforts, MediaCityUK has received the BIFM award for Sustainability and Environmental Impact and two Premises and Facilities Management awards for Expert Services and the Overall award, largely based on the sustainability and energy efficiency activities.

There are a couple key lessons to be drawn from this: we would recommend that organisations put in place a strong energy management process based on continuous improvement, as Peel did, prior to seeking to achieve ISO 50001 as the certification will be much less painful and deliver much greater value. The awards and certification should be seen as the “cherry on the cake” which help raise the programme to a new level. The next key observation is that we should approach the subject of energy efficiency and sustainability as a continuous improvement process. Over the 6 years SustainSuccess has worked with Peel they have never once rested on their laurels and considered the job complete: they have innovated, extended the best practices and constantly set themselves new challenges. This entirely to do with very committed leadership, a culture of improvement and a highly enthusiastic team.

MCUK

Above: the MediaCityUK campus was included in the scope of the ISO 50001 programme.

 

See also: Peel News Release

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Canaries in the mine: Mega-solar plants and grid parity

Posted by on Nov 6, 2013 in Blog, News | 0 comments

megakagoshima-600x0I was thrilled to see this stunning image of Japan’s largest Solar Photovoltaic plant. This consists of 240,000 Kyocera panels providing a massive 70MWe capacity which should produce 78,800 MWh of electricity. The plant is set in 127 acres on a purpose-built island in the city of Kagoshima on the Southern Japanese island of Kyushu. If you want to see it on a map and appreciate its true scale, click here (although the satellite image is from before the completion of the plant).

Impressive thought this is, it pales by comparison with some of the mega-solar plants in the pipeline. India, for example, has just announced a 4GW scheme in Rajasthan  to be built on a 23,000-acre (9308 ha) site close to Sambhar Lake, about 75 km from Jaipur, the state capital. This will potentially triple current solar PV output for India, although it remains to be seen if the plant goes ahead as planned.  

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MACCBuilderPro version 3

Posted by on Oct 6, 2013 in News, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Bright_MACCVersion 3 of MACCBuilderPro was released yesterday. It has a huge number of enhancements designed to make the creation of Marginal Abatement Cost Curves within Excel even easier. Now shipping as a native Excel workbook, existing features like colour-coded categories, design Styles and flexible project listing have all been enhanced. New features include Callouts to label projects, additional file saving options, a “Direct” data entry mode, links with PowerPoint as well as Word, and a host of other powerful features.

This is an indispensable tool for all energy efficiency, emissions policy or sustainability professionals. SustainSuccess offers MACCBuilderPro for a remarkably low cost with the intention of enabling as many people as possible to discover the power of MACC analysis. 

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Earth Overshoot Day

Posted by on Aug 20, 2013 in News | 0 comments

Earth Overshoot DayToday, August 20th 2013,  we have spent our entire budget for the year. This Earth Overshoot Day is two days earlier than in 2012. From now on we will be drawing down more resources and emitting more pollution than our planet can handle.

For another 133 days, to be precise.

Imagine if this was the case with our finances. If from now on we had to live entirely on borrowed money, if we spent 1/3rd more than we earned year-in year-out and our debts were rising, not falling. We would rightly be worried. Time to get serious about resource efficiency.

Global Footprint Network.

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The 10 blogs every energy efficiency expert should subscribe to

Posted by on Jul 18, 2013 in News | 0 comments

FranceWell it appears that SustainSuccess has some fans!  Well one at least! I found that the website was receiving many more hits from France than usual, and traced it back to an article on another energy efficiency blogger’s site: SmartEnergyEfficiency.eu, entitled “The 10 blogs every energy efficiency expert should subscribe to“.

Anyhow, do check out this article because it points to some very good content. And also check the rest of the site while you are at it! Interesting to see some of the material about the French approach – quite different and quite innovative in many ways.

Other excellent blogs previously mentioned on this site are:

  • Christopher Russell’s blog, called “Energy pathfinder” with a treasure trove of practical advice for energy efficiency practitioners and policy-makers.
  • Paul Gildings has a good blog: “The Cokatoo Chronicles”, which covers wider environmental topics, not just energy efficiency.
  • James Atkins has a blog which looks in an irreverent fashion at climate change and other issues. See http://thebustard.blogspot.co.uk/

Hint: most of these blogs can be “subscribed” to either by leaving your email address, or by using an RSS “feed” in Outlook or a dedicated RSS app. To get the feed you usually type in the same top level web-address with “\feed\” at the end. In both these cases – which are incidentally supported by this site  if you look to the right of the screen – you then automatically receive updates of new articles etc.

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Thank you to all SustainSuccess customers!

Posted by on May 23, 2013 in News | 0 comments

THANK YOU Tag Cloud (card thanks greetings gratitude welcome)SustainSuccess is committed to contributing at least 10% of profits towards environmental, social and community projects. This is only possible thanks to the  solid foundation of fee income from our many clients, and so on behalf of these projects, we would like to say to all our customer: “THANK YOU!”

Also a big thank you for all those Associates in the wider SustainSuccess team, whose professionalism and commitment have enabled us to deliver our projects on schedule and on budget, which in turn contributes to the profit we can dedicate to worthy causes and the satisfaction of our customers, which is the foundation of our business.

Our latest donation is of £5,000 to the World Land Trust, which purchases land to provide a safe habitat for endangered species around the world. Sir David Attenborough is the Patron of this charity who are doing a remarkable job of conservation in many parts of the world.

To see more details of all the  contributions that SustainSuccess has been able to make as a result of your business, please visit the Our Contribution page. Any thoughts on where future donations may be directed are always welcome, please do contact us.

Gracias, Merci, Danke, Děkuji, Thanks – it is really, truly appreciated.

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Free Lighting Hours tool available

Posted by on May 1, 2013 in Blog, News | 0 comments

LightingHoursThumb Just to let everyone know that I have uploaded my new Lighting Hours tool, which is free!

This was jolly fun to develop as it is a “mashup” between some code that Greg Pelletier developed which uses astronomical data to calculate sunrise and sunset at a given latitude and longitude, and some additional code from Jamie Bull which does a sexy internet lookup of a place name, postcode, landmark etc via Google Maps and returns a latitude and longitude. Add into the mix some nifty working out of TimeZones and Daylight Savings dates (e.g. First Sunday in March) for any given year and you end up with something which – IMHO – is quite neat. Hopefully useful too!

Click the link above or select Lighting Hours from the Excel Tools menu to learn more. If you want to download it you will need to give me an email address but you can opt out of marketing or future communications. Enjoy!

 

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