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.


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  • Selecting efficient equipment

    Rating schemes and internet technology can help with purchasing decisions for lower energy solutions.


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  • Financing an equipment upgrade

    A variety of finance schemes are available for equipment, including innovative loans and leases.


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  • Improving equipment performance

    There are a number of 'do it yourself' activities for saving energy from office equipment that can be undertaken before investing in upgrades.


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  • 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.


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  • Green ICT Challenge

    Get your game on and play our brand new CitySwitch green ICT challenge.

    Whether you work in IT or don't even know the difference between a laptop and a tablet, have fun while testing your knowledge and find out how you can take action to improve the performance of your office ICT and reduce operational costs. 




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Related resources

  • Greening your Information and Communications Technology (ICT)

    Information and Communication Technology (ICT) can account for up to 65% of an office's energy use. Get an introduction to greening your office ICT including practical actions and start the conversation with your ICT department to find out how your organisation can work together to achieve greater energy and cost savings.




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  • Fifth Estate ebook - Green ICT

    How much energy are your computers and office equipment using? What effect does all that equipment have on your office cooling bill? What’s happening to all your old equipment? And how green are the data centres your business depends upon?

    This free Green ICT ebook aims to help clear up some of these questions and provide some simple solutions to make sure your ICT is running as efficiently as possible.


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  • CitySwitch Energy Audit Toolkits

    This Energy Audit Toolkit set has been developed to assist non-technical or semi-technical energy managers in small to medium organisations identify actions to improve energy efficiency through the use of a simple but detailed audit checklist and develop plans for implementing energy efficiency actions.


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  • Energy Star

    The ENERGY STAR is a voluntary label that indicates excellent energy performance for computers, monitors, printers and whitegoods. Products with the label are third-party certified based on laboratory testing.


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  • Top tips for working paper free

    Hear from one City of Sydney green champion about how she approached the challenge of going paper-free in the office including useful apps and other resources.


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  • Energy efficiency certification scheme

    This certification scheme offered by the Energy Efficiency Council certifies professionals that can lead comprehensive energy retrofits of commercial buildings. Certification helps building owners and managers find professionals they can trust and provides a benchmark for energy efficiency professionals.


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  • Energy Hunter How To Guides and Course

    This kit was developed for small and medium sized businesses across the Hunter Region to identify, manage and improve their energy consumption. This region, traditionally dependent on carbon-intensive industry can become a showcase for clean energy technology and best practice energy efficiency.


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  • Computer Audit Tool

    A simple Computer Energy Management tool, developed by CitySwitch. Click to download a Microsoft Office Excel spreadsheet that makes it easy to calculate the greenhouse and financial impact of computers left on overnight.


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  • Data centre energy audit subsidies

    The NSW Energy Saver program is offering eligible businesses a 50% subsidy for Data Centre Energy audits when combined with a NABERS Data Centre rating to help businesses identify opportunities for improvement and cost savings.


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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.



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  • 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.


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  • 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.


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  • 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.


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  • 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.


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  • 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.


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  • 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.


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  • 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.


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  • 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.