Forecourt retailers locked into energy deals are feeling very fortunate given the current rising prices, however even they are looking at renewable energy alternatives.
Tim Garner from the award-winning Garner Group says one of his sites is locked into an energy deal for another couple of years but his other site’s contract comes to an end in January.
“We are expecting a huge increase come January, so much so that we are exploring other sources of energy. There was a time when the return on investment for solar PV panels was seven years but now it is down to three years so we are going to investigate that. Luckily both our sites have everything they can in the way of equipment to make them as energy efficient as possible, but there’s no getting away from the fact that you can’t just turn the lights out on a forecourt.”
Ben Lawrence from Lawrences Garages says that thankfully they have a fixed rate, signed last year at a rate of between 18 and 20p, which Ben says is very good in the current climate.
He adds: “However, we still understand as a company that we must invest in renewable energy. We’ve had a quote for 96 solar panels at Sholing to replace and add to our current panels on the canopy. We also have reclaim units in our car washes to help keep the water bills down.”
And Goran Raven from Raven’s Budgens, Abridge, Essex, says he struck lucky and locked into a five-year deal for electric prices two years ago so recgonises he is not being as badly affected as others. “Saying that, any new equipment that comes onto the site has to have an excellent energy rating for us before we even think about installing it.”