15 July 2014
Adelaide manufacturers learned how they could slash their energy costs and stay ahead of competition at a Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) and Commonwealth Bank-hosted seminar on Thursday, 17 July.
The seminar demonstrated how using finance to upgrade operations was helping manufacturers future-proof their businesses, upgrade equipment to reduce energy costs by 15 to 50 per cent, and enhance energy productivity and competitiveness in a tough economic climate.
CEFC Chief Operating Officer Meg McDonald, who was among presenters at the seminar at Crowne Plaza Hotel, said the CEFC and Commonwealth Bank have a $100 million Energy Efficient Loan product available to manufacturers and have already supported food processors and manufacturers to save on energy costs and boost competitiveness.
"For example, the CEFC provided finance towards a refrigeration upgrade for iconic South Australian ice cream maker Golden North that makes its operations more efficient, increases its production capacity and enables it to expand its business," she said.
"We've also helped major fruit suppliers cut their refrigeration costs through financing refrigeration upgrades, a rendering plant install a generator that will supply electricity, hot water and steam to reduce its reliance on grid-supplied electricity and we've helped a plastics manufacturer upgrade its rotational moulding ovens to halve oven energy use."
Those attending the Adelaide seminar also gained an understanding of the drivers for energy efficiency investment from energy efficiency specialist consultant, Nick Palousis who is CEO and founder of Adelaide-based 2XE, Tindo Solar's Commercial Business Manager Craig Cowling and from Energetics Principal Consultant Graham Winkelman.
ABOUT THE ENERGY EFFICIENT LOAN PROGRAM
Under the Energy Efficient Loan (EEL) program, the CEFC and Commonwealth Bank are co-financing loans for businesses to save on their energy costs. The EEL is designed as a cost-effective financing solution to help businesses, particularly those from the manufacturing sector, upgrade equipment to reduce their energy costs while preserving precious working capital. The program is available nationwide for projects that meet CEFC eligibility criteria. More information
Information about finance under the EEL program is available from Commonwealth Bank Relationship Managers or Asset Finance Business Development Managers.
ABOUT AUSTRALIAN MANUFACTURING
The manufacturing sector, which employs 950,000 Australians and contributes about $100 billion or 6.8 per cent of Australia's total GDP, is highly energy intensive and since 2000, electricity prices faced by some manufacturers have increased by 115 per cent.
The Climate Institute has estimated potential savings from untapped energy-efficiency measures in the manufacturing sector would be worth $2.4 billion in 2020.
Food and beverage manufacturing, particularly meat and meat product manufacturing hold the greatest potential for energy savings.
ClimateWorks says the types of projects that present the largest potential are process design and optimisation, including improvements to motors, conveying, mixing and handling equipment and reducing thermal losses to refrigeration systems, ovens, dryers, furnaces/kilns and boiler systems. Waste heat can also be captured and used to pre-heat materials and reduce the fuel inputs required to perform other industrial processes, reducing production costs.