Technically Energy Management
In conjunction with a major travel center, we presented an educational session at the 2015 NACS Show, focused on energy management best practices for convenience stores. If you missed it, don’t worry. We’ve compiled the highlights below:
From traditional to advanced energy management
We’ve all visited a convenience store in the middle of the afternoon with its external canopy lights on, or walked into a store that is uncomfortably warm or too cold. Lighting and temperature control through scheduling is a basic energy management system function. More advanced systems today incorporate refrigeration equipment and remote monitoring, and the latest, complete systems offer control and monitoring of foodservice, fuel and other critical equipment.
With an advanced system, a typical convenience store might see $4,000 in annual energy savings and $6,000 in annual operational savings, resulting in a possible payback period of less than 24 months — and it can be faster, depending on store size and functions.
Best practices from c-store front lines
NACS Show attendees learned firsthand one of their peers about how this multisite retailer uses energy management systems for:
- Monitoring and control: lighting, refrigeration temperatures, HVAC setpoints, diesel pumps, water heater temperature and outages and voltage imbalance.
- Measurement and verification: energy efficiency and utility demand programs.
- Reporting and services: food safety reports, data mining insights, equipment performance and identification of top facility or equipment issues.
With these systems, retailers are able to make better operational decisions in real-time. Operators can get better utility rates and avoid relying on store staff — who ideally should be focused on serving customers — to make equipment adjustments.
IT’s new role at the center of operations
Energy management is cross-functional within a convenience store’s business. For some organizations, like my co-presenter, the maintenance department is the primary user of energy management systems to keep equipment running properly across the enterprise.
With heightened focus on cyber security and the growing IoT space, it’s increasingly important to involve the IT team in retail facility operations. IT is now at the center of new energy management systems, with primary responsibilities focused on maintaining network connectivity and system security.
Download the session presentation here.
Do you have any insights to add around energy management for convenience stores? Leave a comment below or connect with us on social media (@EmersonClimate on Twitter). We’d love to hear from you.
National Account Executive, Retail Solutions
Emerson Climate Technologies