According to the Energy Information Administration, restaurants are the most energy intensive commercial buildings in the United States. Per square foot, they consume nearly three times the energy of the average commercial building. What’s more, almost all quick serve and casual dining respondents to Ecova’s 2016 Energy And Sustainability Predictions: Findings From Leading Professionals survey expect energy prices to rise in 2016. Last year, just 53 percent anticipated the same. In light of their energy intensity and anticipated energy cost increases, restaurateurs are taking action to mitigate the bottom-line impact of their utility bills.
Beyond leveraging data to drive electric and gas efficiency, quick serve and casual dining restaurants are taking action to reduce water cost and consumption and optimize waste services in their quest for cost-efficient sustainability.
Restaurants run on narrow profit margins. According to the National Restaurant Association’s most recent Restaurant Operations Report, most earn pretax income of about 4 percent to 6 percent of total revenue. Measurable reductions in utility costs directly impact measurable improvement to the bottom line. This report offers a glimpse into how leading quick serve and casual dining professionals are achieving that impact.