Cannabis extraction facilities need help, too. There is a lot of discussion about energy at cannabis grow facilities, but like more products, the raw material is only the beginning. Every cannabis product needs either further processing or testing to ensure quality and safety. One important step in the journey, extraction, offers yet another opportunity to save energy and reduce the industry’s carbon footprint.
In many ways, cannabis growers and processors are relearning and adapting some age-old practices from manufacturing behemoths like GM or Ford. Load shedding is a tried-and-true tool for improving energy efficiency and making the most of locations with energy rates that vary by time of day. By avoiding peak energy hours, companies can save money on every single kilowatt used; some states, like California, can have extremely wide swings in rates based on the time of the day and the time of year.
The key points are to focus on shifting energy use to off-hours. Running machinery and processing equipment late at night can save thousands of dollars per month in some locations. Of course, having efficient equipment at any time of day matters, too. Finally, don’t hide from energy regulations; embrace them. Use energy recommendations and guidelines as starting points to improve upon; they’re going to save you money in the long run!
One of the toughest challenges in meeting the first of these criteria comes with people. Operating late at night requires people to work late at night, and at labs and facilities, it can be especially tough to convince professionals to work the graveyard shift. This often requires special financial incentives, and for facilities, it takes a careful eye on the math to ensure that the added workforce budget doesn’t exceed the energy savings.
The solution may be to use energy storage to bring that late-night cheap energy to the daytime workforce. Advancing in energy storage capacity at all scales is more affordable than ever, and for facilities that rely heavily on power to keep moving, adapting the right size batteries to your needs and uses can have a big impact on the bottom line. Pushing automated processes to the night shift and focusing on lower-input processes that require staffing during the day might even allow the facility to run primarily or even entirely on stored energy during the highest demand, and most expensive, times of the day.
We’re not just helping cannabis companies improve; we’re gathering real-world data that we can apply to any project in this industry to reduce operating costs in this growing industry. To learn more about Keen Technical Solutions and how we can help your cannabis facility, contact us today.