Energy efficient equipment

Computers and office equipment such as printers, photocopiers and fax machines can typically contribute between 30 and 55 per cent of tenant energy use. When evaluating purchase options companies need to consider not just purchase price, but day to day running costs.  With the rapid rate of development in equipment, efficiency of most items has at least doubled in the last ten years. Choosing or leasing the right office equipment will have significant impacts on your energy use and costs. Audits, energy ratings and staff behaviours will all help your organisation make efficient choices.

Key elements

Energy efficient equipment overview

Equipment efficiency can be improved by upgrading to new models, automation and behaviour change.

Undertaking an equipment audit

Energy equipment audits identify areas for attention and action for savings. The scope can range from a simple walk-around checking what is left on after hours to an extensive review by an energy efficiency professional.

Related resources

Energy Rating Labels

The red stars for equipment energy efficiency is an Australian labeling standard that applies to computer monitors, major appliances for cooling and heading, white goods, and home entertainment. This website allows you to compare models.

Grants and Assistance Finder

Commonwealth and State/Territory government grant programs available to support the investigation and implementation of energy efficiency projects. Be sure to check eligibility requirements and funding guideslines, which can differ significantly across programs and jurisdictions.

Sustainability Victoria

Sustainability Victoria provides best practice guides and case studies on energy and materials efficiency, guides on how to carry out waste assessments, and tools to assess a business' current level of resource efficiency and map the life cycle of a product or service.

Sustainable Procurement Guide (Australian Government)

Guide for Australian Government purchasers to include sustainability considerations in all stages of the procurement process, from identifying the business need to disposing of goods. Commissioned by the Australian Government and developed by ECO-buy.

Energy Efficiency Training Program

This NSW Goverment program helps managers and staff to make business operations, products and services more energy efficient and less carbon intensive. Energy efficiency training resources are available for medium and small enterprises and commercial building design, construction an operation.

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Case studies

Case Study: Psaros

Case Study: Psaros

Psaros is the first mid-tier property developer in Western Australia to operate a carbon neutral head office. The tenancy consumes less than 50 per cent of the energy used by a typical 2.5 star NABERS Energy-rated tenancy and due to their Carbon Neutral certification, they have off set a total of 221 tonnes of CO2-e over two years.

Case study: Exergy

Case study: Exergy

Exergy are the first CitySwitch signatory to achieve a 6 Star NABERS rating without Green Power. Exergy  focussed on getting the simple things right, including laptops for staff and greater use of the cloud, zoned lighting and occupancy sensors, and energy monitoring that sends an alert when usage is higher than usual.

Case Study: ACORPP

Case Study: ACORPP

ACORPP involved staff in selecting a new office and save over a thousand dollars a year in electricity by choosing a space with  natural light, providing laptops, and timers on boardroom air conditioning. ACORPP also chose furniture and fitout materials for certified low environmental impact, recycled content and recyclability.

Case Study: WT Sustainability

Case Study: WT Sustainability

WTS took the opportunity, when fitting out their new office in North Sydney, to use in-house expertise and knowledge in integrating sustainable design and construction practice and initiatives. They successfully achieved their goal of a 6 Star NABERS Energy tenancy rating and now have an energy consumption level of 78 per cent less than a typical office.

Case Study: Goodman Group

Case Study: Goodman Group

Goodman Group have increased staff collaboration, job satisfaction and achieved energy savings of 46 per cent as a result of transitioning to an activity-based workplace. The CitySwitch award-winner cites an innovative staff change management program and technology upgrades as the key to the fitout's success.

Case study: Climate Friendly

Case study: Climate Friendly

Climate Friendly are striving for energy efficiency excellence by applying the simple philosophy of 'measure, offset, reduce and review'. The consultancy is ensuring effective ongoing measurement using technology such as PowerMate and FutureSwich, and has successfully created a switch-off culture at their Sydney office to meet a target 6 star NABERS Energy rating.

Case study: Baenziger Coles

Case study: Baenziger Coles

Baenziger Coles, an architecture and interior design company, has further optimised office energy efficiency by investing in renewable energy. As a result of feed-in tariffs and a reduction in energy use, the Melbourne office is enjoying a good return on investment, along with annual CO2 savings.

Case study: Victorian Dept. of Transport

Case study: Victorian Dept. of Transport

Long-time Signatory, the Victorian Department of Transport, Planning & Local Infrastructure, has achieved a number of operational gains including a 33 per cent reduction in energy use. With the help of the CitySwitch RMIT student program, resource audits have provided useful insights into staff 'switch-off' behaviour, waste avoidance tactics and office equipment procurement to achieve ongoing environmental and economic savings.

Case Study: DTZ

Case Study: DTZ

As the first corporate tenant to join CitySwitch, DTZ has since achieved outstanding energy efficiency results in their Sydney office. They've slashed operating costs by 40 per cent and reduced emissions by 375,000 kg CO₂over 8 years.
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Search resources

CitySwitch Signatory of the Year and New Signatory Awards - category judging criteria

  • Delivering outcomes as demonstrated by an improved or maintained current NABERS Energy rating and achieved energy savings* (up to 28 points)
  • Implementing one or more energy saving initiatives (up to 10 points)
  • Demonstrating leadership by undertaking innovative, creative or progressive office energy efficiency activities (up to 10 points)
  • Engagement of staff/ customers/suppliers and/or stakeholders to educate and create market transformation (up to 10 points)
  • Participation in CitySwitch local program activities (up to 10 points).
Note, new Signatories submitting for New Signatory of the Year Award need only complete an indicative rating – all other submissions must be accredited.

CitySwitch Partnership of the Year Award - category judging criteria

Eligibility Criteria

Submitted projects should:

  • Involve more than one registered company 
  • Demonstrate that they are  innovative and over and above “business as usual”
  • Demonstrate that they catalyse “market transformation” and or “address a market barrier”
  • Deliver a reduction in energy consumption and carbon emissions within the built environment 

Judging Criteria

  • Delivering outcomes as demonstrated by an improved or maintained current NABERS Energy rating and achieved energy savings* (up to 14 points)
  • Implementing one or more energy saving initiatives (up to 10 points)
  • Demonstrating leadership by undertaking innovative, creative or progressive office energy efficiency activities (up to 17 points)
  • Engagement of staff/ customers/suppliers and/or stakeholders to educate and create market transformation (up to 17 points)
  • Participation in CitySwitch local program activities (up to 10 points)
  • The submitting entity MUST be a CitySwitch Signatory
Note, Signatories submitting for the Partnership of the Year Award may submit an accredited NABERS tenancy, whole building or base building rating.

It’s easy and free to join the program. Your good-will commitment to the program is an acknowledgement of the business sector’s role in
contributing to environmental sustainability and your intention to reduce your own energy consumption and associated carbon emissions.

As part of this, Signatories to the program commit to achieve an accredited NABERS Energy tenancy rating (between 4 and 6 stars) and
work with CitySwitch to improve their tenancy’s environmental performance.

Find out more about how obtaining a NABERS Energy rating ensures you can benchmark your performance, better manage your progress
over time and promote your star rating achievement.