Solar as a Service providing cheap energy for industry

Australian businesses within the manufacturing and process industries often highlight energy costs as the second highest burden their businesses face behind raw material costs.

And while solar has long been an option for manufacturing business to help reduce their energy costs, until now the costs of installing a large enough system to meet their energy needs has been too high for most.

Now with the release of Origin’s Solar as a Service, companies are now able to enjoy the benefits of low cost solar energy without having to make the capital investment in the solar system.

Richard Parker, General Manager of Townsville Engineering is one business owner that has been considering going solar since 2014 but never pursued it until Origin launched Solar as a Service. Origin’s Solar as a Service option allowed Richard to install an 80kW solar system on his roof without any capital investment in the system. The system is generating a third of the businesses’ energy needs at a rate much lower than what they are paying for electricity from the grid.

“The whole process has been really easy since Origin came back to us with this new option. We’re excited to see the new electricity savings, but are also glad that we can find a way to be environmentally conscious,” he says.

Townsville Engineering’s premises covers over 5,000 square meters and services local government operations, mining companies, bulk-handling facilities and maintaining an export line in mining equipment. Richard’s decision to finally move onto an efficient solar system is not only beneficial to the organisation, but also the community.

“As a business that operates for almost 10 hours a day, this is a great service. I feel very positive about the change and can’t see any negatives.”

According to Phil Mackey, General Manager, Solar and Emerging Business, Origin’s “Solar as a Service provides business with a simple way to save money on their energy bills by providing them with access to low cost solar energy at a lower price than they are presently paying for their grid energy.”

“Plus the business does not have to pay for the system or worry about ongoing maintenance as Origin owns the system and looks after all this. This option is ideal for companies with unshaded roof space, who plan to be in their premises for the long term and operate during the day.” Under Solar as a Service, businesses can keep the same solar electricity rate for up to 15 years, protecting them against any possible future electricity price hikes, or they can choose a CPI indexed rate.

“We know from customers that being more environmentally friendly is of concern – especially those who use a lot of energy or operate on 24/7 basis.

So offering Solar as a Service is enabling companies to cross two things off their list: saving energy bill costs and doing their bit for the environment,” says Phil Mackey, General Manager, Solar and Emerging Business, Origin.

The amount that each business can save will depend on their daytime energy needs, roof space, the size of the system installed, the length of their Solar as a Service agreement as well as what happens more generally with retail electricity rates. The customer doesn’t need to be with Origin for grid supplied electricity to take up the offer.

“The service is something that adds great benefit to not only a company’s cash flow but also to their green credentials too. And, at the end of the day, it gives companies a solution for some of their biggest and ongoing considerations,” Mackey concluded.

Origin Energy


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