Empowering golf clubs on their journey to carbon net zero

Meet new GCMA partner Energy Direct Group as Co-Founder Barry Ersoz discusses his business and how it can help your golf club.

Barry Ersoz — Co-Founder and Director at Energy Direct Group

Tell us about Energy Direct Group

We are an independent utility management consultancy servicing SMEs & I&C clients across the UK and Ireland, in all industry sectors and in all aspects of utilities. We provide a range of products and services from energy procurement to renewables however, other services that we provide include, waste management, payment solutions, metering & site works, automated bill validation, power purchase agreements (PPAs) and carbon reporting. 

As a company, we have invested heavily in technology in order to deliver top-tier energy solutions to reduce energy costs and remove carbon.  We also have in place a nationwide network of trusted partners to assist us in delivering tailored solutions to our clients to meet their business goals and objectives.

“We are delighted to welcome Energy Direct Group as the newest business to join the GCMA Partner Network. Barry and his son Alex, who run the family business from their HQ in North Yorkshire, have a passion and drive to help golf clubs understand how to take their first steps towards a sustainable future and begin the journey to Carbon Net Zero. Sustainability is the number one topic our members told us they require the most help with through an extensive survey conducted at the end of 2022 by our business partner Players 1st. From energy procurement to achieving carbon neutrality, I’m confident Barry, Alex, and the team at Energy Direct Group can help our membership in a variety of ways.” 

Darren Wood, GCMA Partnerships Manager

What do you hope to achieve from this relationship with the GCMA?

We are dedicated to a sustainable future and are here to help GCMA  members achieve carbon neutrality. By working closely with the GCMA, our aim is to assist its members on their journey to self-sustainability. We will first look to understand the clubs individual business needs before we formulate a strategy to meet their specific goals. 

We are passionate about sustainability and we seek to guide GCMA members every step of the way, from initial assessments to the implementation of renewable solutions as well as on going support.

By members implementing energy storage solutions such as solar panels, alongside on-site energy systems such as battery storage, clubs will have a form of backup power during grid outages. Additionally, this stored energy can be utilised for out of hours events that may be taking place, reducing reliance on the traditional power gird and reducing energy costs. It will also contribute to reducing their carbon footprint.

We will also look at other renewable solutions for members, such as voltage optimisation which adjusts incoming voltage to a more efficient level, helping to reduce energy consumption and extend the lifespan of electrical equipment and ultimately, contributing to reducing energy costs and carbon reduction.

EV charging will also be in the offering to members, as well any other renewable solutions and services that meet their requirements.

For clubs seeking the procurement of green energy, we work alongside suppliers with Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin (REGO 100% certified) so that they have peace of mind knowing that the energy they use is not produced by fossil fuels. We also have an exclusive green deal in place for GCMA members for when their energy is due for renewal.

Funding renewable solutions for GCMA members 

Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) are available to GCMA members which feature a fixed pricing structure, shielding members from energy market volatility and enabling accurate budgeting. 

Securing a PPA often allows businesses (as a whole) competitive or, even lower electricity rates than prevailing market prices, leading to substantial long-term cost savings. 

Individual PPAs can be agreed for clubs however, by working closely with its members we aim to aggregate the clubs overall annual consumptions to achieve greater PPA  terms and lower electricity rates. This way, each club benefits while still retaining their own PPA.

Roof repairs can be included within a PPA along with the installation costs prior to solar panels and battery storage, for example, being fitted. During the term of a PPA, clubs will have peace of mind knowing that insurance and maintenance of the renewable hardware is covered and at the end of the PPA term, clubs would be gifted the renewable hardware and will still benefit from reduced energy costs, as well as a reduction in carbon. 

Revenue share schemes are available for voltage optimisation and EV charging and we aim to share all of these renewable offerings to members in the coming weeks.

With no initial financial outlay, members and clubs can start on their journey towards self sustainability today. 

How Important is that environmental aspect and the drive for net carbon neutral?

When I entered the utility industry over two decades ago, my client base was predominately within the hospitality sector, pubs, bars, restaurants and takeaways. There wasn’t much emphasis on renewables, other than LED retrofit lighting, for example. Everything was price driven as everyone was price conscious and the onus was not on whether their energy they bought for their business was produced from fossil fuels or by wind, solar or hydro. There wasn’t a great push to go green back then.

The only real thing that was ever really associated with the environment at that time was the Climate Change Levy (CCL), which was introduced in April 2001. 

Businesses are more price conscious than ever however as a lot has changed over the last two decades (and even more so over the the past several years) as every size of business from every industry sector now has to consider implementing renewable solutions in order to reduce their carbon footprint.

Businesses now see the benefit of renewables as they understand that they can potentially achieve zero cost for their energy by harnessing solutions such as solar.

It is important for businesses to understand their commitment to carbon net zero but even more important ensuring that they receive the right advice. This is where we play our part in the process. 

Click here to find out more about Energy Direct Group

By GCMA Content Team

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