Affordable smart building management technologies easily justify the cost

When the first blocks were laid at the site of the Empire State Building in 1929, it’s unlikely anyone imagined it would be making energy savings for its owners almost a century later. But after an extensive phased retrofit that began in 2009, the landmark of New York’s skyline has exceeded projected energy savings for the second year running. As a case study for smart building technology, it’s clear that age is no barrier to intelligence.

Smart buildings have been proven to save energy, streamline facilities management and prevent expensive equipment failures. Yet to many property owners and investors, their value remains a mystery.

The business case
As the Empire State example shows, the reality is that most buildings can demonstrate a strong business case for strategic investments in smart building systems and management technologies. All building types, whether they are residential and commercial, can be built or retrofitted to become highly automated and smart. A smart building is often easier to operate and maintain than a building that lacks automated systems.

Whether you’re a building owner or a tenant, there’s a powerful case for improving energy efficiency, reducing occupancy cost and improving productivity. However, it’s not widely known that the advantages of today’s affordable smart building management technologies easily justify the outlay. For example, knowing the right time to repair or replace equipment extends machinery life and reduces facility staff, operations and replacement costs. Smart building management systems detect when a piece of equipment is close to failure and alert facilities personnel. In extreme cases, they can prevent full-scale building system failures.

Another factor in favour of smart buildings is that the building automation equipment and controls used to be proprietary technology but it’s now possible to gather data from diverse systems even if they were made by different manufacturers. Today’s wireless sensors are also more affordable than earlier ‘closed’ devices.

Kedington is well placed to help businesses substantially reduce the carbon footprint of their sites or buildings, with typical savings of between 30 and 70 per cent. We do this by putting in place innovative, site-specific intelligent networks with the ability to identify where waste energy is being generated in buildings.

It’s a logical progression for the largest ICT network builder in Ireland. For more than 25 years, we have been designing, supplying, installing and supporting leading-edge networks and wireless technology. We have installed more than 250 million metres of UTP cabling and three million metres of fibre during this time. Our skills run the gamut from structured cabling, power supply, network planning and management, through to air conditioning, fire suppression systems and smart lighting. We can supply everything from energy-efficient lighting solutions and HVAC optimisation to high-performance refrigeration solutions, compressed air, and waste-heat to hot-water solutions.


The method
Our work in smart buildings has covered food and industrial premises through to commercial office space. Our method is to design energy-efficient solutions that are tailored for each client’s specific need, by examining their existing processes and equipment and removing waste wherever possible. The resulting savings in energy costs and carbon emissions can make a significant impact on businesses looking to remain competitive and maintain margins. Simply put, we take the guesswork out of saving your clients money.

We take a scientific approach to reducing energy usage. We initially calculate a complete energy blueprint for each client by metering their existing energy consumption. This energy audit uses specific and accurate measuring equipment to establish a full understanding of the problem areas in energy consumption and to ensure an appropriate solution can be found.

We work with your customer’s existing building to assess where energy savings can be made, and we make recommendations for optimising HVAC plant, including additional controls, and we introduce sophisticated software solutions that maximise energy efficiency. This dramatically reduces the running costs of a building so that it operates more effectively.

Our work is validated by Crowley Carbon, one of Europe’s fastest growing energy management specialists. They stand over all our work by offering energy saving guarantees for any projects that we deliver, and those savings are underwritten by financial backers.

What further makes Kedington unique is our ability to continuously monitor our customer’s energy performance and savings through the use of our Carbon Control Centre (C3). This remote monitoring service ensures that customers maintain their energy savings well after the energy efficiency project has been delivered. This stops bad practices returning and identifies new opportunities to save.

The process
The process begins with Kedington’s three-step, low-risk approach to discovering what energy savings are achievable within your organisation. At this meeting, we will bring you through our energy profiling questionnaire, which gives us a holistic view of where your business consumes energy. This helps us to identify where the likely savings are and also the potential monetary value of these savings.

Next, once the client has completed the questionnaire, we move to the opportunity assessment (OA) stage, a free, one-day on-site audit of your client’s premises. This is conducted by our partner Crowley Carbon’s Solution Design Team.

The results of the OA are then presented back in the form of a high-level proposal with recommendations on the proposed energy conservation measures. The OA details the capital costs for these energy efficiency projects, estimated energy savings, CO2 savings and a return on investment, which is normally less than three years. We will also provide financing options for shared savings projects, as an alternative to businesses having to make a capital investment.

The final stage before implementing the energy efficiency project is called an investment grade audit (IGA). An IGA is a paid service which is an in-depth examination into the findings of the OA. Typically taking several weeks to complete, the process results in your client receiving a financially guaranteed, fixed-price proposal detailing the viable energy conservation measures, the costs associated with delivering these projects, and the guaranteed energy saving associated with delivering the project for the organisation.

Our three-step approach has benefited our customers and has made a substantial contribution to their bottom line, and they are happy to share their experiences. It’s time to think smart: talk to Kedington today about how energy efficiency can help your clients save money.