energy efficiency and opportunities: ieema journal interview

Energy Efficiency and Opportunities: IEEMA Journal Interview

06 December, 07:12

ENTES India country manager Mr. Aman Verma's interview on Energy Efficiency and Opportunities was published at IEEMA Journal.

You can read the article below.


Why should we invest in energy efficiency?

Energy as we all know is an important however limited resource and energy efficiency simply means economising on the use of energy without adversely affecting economic growth and development, Using less energy to perform same tasks by minimising energy wastages, As the saying goes the greener Watt is the one which is never produced". Cost of saving one watt of energy is much lower than cost of producing it. Investing in energy efficiency brings multipronged benefits for an organisation and broadly these can be classified into financialieconomic. environmental and social benefits. Some of the critical ones are mentioned as below:

  • Reduced energy costs and saving on energy bills.
  • Optimum utilisation of machinery and equipment, Energy efficient machines delivers a much longer life span with reduced maintenance costs.
  • Energy efficient companies can gain a competitive advantage in the market w.r.t maximising profitability or enhancing market share through price reduction.
  • Reduced environmental impact resulting in lower greenhouse gas emissions. less pollution and reduced wastages.
  • At a national level it implies reduced energy imports and reduced external dependence.

What are the links between energy and sustainable development?

Energy undoubtedly is one of the primary elements required for social and economic growth and the consumption increases in parallel with the economic growth and development However this growth needs to be sustainable in longer term which implies meeting today's society needs without adversely affecting the future generations, Energy resources are limited and hence energy efficiency has an important role for ensuring sustainable development. Producing (Saving is producing in other terms) more energy rather than consuming it, will result in net positive contribution.

Do energy prices have an impact on energy efficiency?

Energy prices has a significant impact and speed of implementation of energy efficiency initiatives whether it is energy saving measures , retrofits or choosing an alternate source of energy is directly proportional to the cost of energy. Higher the energy prices. greater is the reason to invest in efficiency considering return on investments.

Indian buildings are said to be very energy inefficient and a substantial part of our electricity shortage can be addressed, if we have improved energy efficiency. your views please

If we look at the energy consumption elements in a typical building, it mainly comprises of HVAC (Heating. Ventilation & Air conditioning), Lighting and Appliances. Now in some areas there has been significant progress when it comes to use of energy efficient appliances which are Star rated /BEE approved (ACs. Heaters . Fans and other appliances ) and switching to LED lighting.

However certain crucial areas still remains energy inefficient such as:

  • Limited implementation of solar energy as an alternate source
  • Absence of building management systems (MIS) for efficient control and switching of loads.
  • Construction material ( Poor insulation resulting in leakages etc )
  • Poor maintenance of HVAC systems.
  • Use of natural lighting inside the buildings.

Large part of shortage can be addressed if above points are taken care.

Your views on Energy efficiency in industry and the role of technology

Industry consumption represents a large part of our overall energy requirements and energy efficiency scope in an industry can be broadly segmented in following areas:

  • Enhancing energy efficiency by switching to alternate source of energy such as solar, wind etc.
  • Use of energy efficient devices like Motors. Pumps. Boilers. furnaces and other loads.
  • Comprehensive monitoring of energy parameters, data collection. analysis and remedial measures. Basically implementation of EMS initiatives.
  • Maintenance and retrofitting of old equipment and machinery with modern instrumentation.
  • Energy efficient processes designed with good insulation properties and waste heat recovery.

Technology is playing an important role in most of the above aspects mentioned such as newer and efficient devices replacing the old ones such as 1E3/1E4 class Electric motors, use of Drives and soft starters for pump and fan controls and high performance boilers.

Minimising energy wastages in Industry is a method of implementing energy efficiency which is essentially achieved by implementing energy monitoring systems using Analysers and remote monitoring systems. With the advancement of technology, now we have Energy analysers which are compact, smart and capture the parameters like energy consumption and power quality in much greater depth and the data can be accessed remotely on the PC or phone using cloud based software.

Without installing expensive and complicated software. In the same way. one of the key energy efficiency initiative is optimum utilisation of available power using reactive power compensation systems normally referred as APFC panels in the industry. Here also the new generation APFC controllers are available ensuring super fine compensation systems.

What are some of the untapped opportunities in the energy efficiency market?

One of the critical segment and highly relevant in Indian context is the MSME segment and in my view nothing much significant with respect to energy initiatives has been achieved in this sector. If we go by estimates. in India there are around 60 million MSMEs contributing to almost 45% of manufacturing output. This is a huge base and by large untapped segment with respect to energy efficiency, If we drill down on the reasons. amongst many, one aspect is that till today largely the energy efficiency initiatives are sold by the organisations and not bought by the customers. And when it's about marketing and selling, the ideal addressable segment for any service provider is large, designated consumers and corporates who are far better equipped with respect to financial and technical capabilities. MSME sector normally does not employ highly technical staff and has limitations in terms of finance which makes these energy efficiency initiatives unattractive to service providers and relatively difficult to implement.

What could be a game changer is a user friendly. easy to implement and cost effective EMS ( Energy management System) which can be achieved using smart. low cost, Plug N play monitoring device and cloud based energy software through which one can have real time tracking of energy wastages.

The true barometer of success for energy efficiency initiatives in our country is when we see a small factory or a workshop owner implementing a energy management system (EMS ) or switch to an alternative energy source like Solar.

Click for read article: Challenges and trends in modern automatic power factor correction systems

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