What is Energy Management?
Energy management is the efficient and effective use of energy to maximize profits by minimizing costs, and thereby enhancing your competitive position in the market.
This definition is very broad, but that's because energy management covers many operations from services to product, equipment design, and even shipping. Waste minimization and waste disposal also present energy management opportunities. In fact, every thing you do uses energy and presents opportunities for savings.
Energy management is a 'whole picture' approach to determine what savings can be reached while ensuring that your company is as competitive as possible. Many energy managers fail to take the time to understand the goals of an organization and instead make recommendations to simply cut the utility bill. A good energy manager will understand that optimizing systems to work with an organizations' goals results in the best use of energy.
The primary objective is to maximize profits or minimize costs, leading to:
Improved energy efficiency, reducing costs through reducing energy use.
Reduced greenhouse gas emissions, improved air quality, and increased employee happiness.
Cultivating good communications on energy matters.
Developing and maintaining effective monitoring, reporting, and management strategies.
Reducing the impacts of curtailments and other energy interruptions (increasing reliability).
Constantly sourcing new and better ways to increase returns from energy investments.
The need for Energy Management
Your competitors are constantly finding ways to decrease costs, and you should be too. In fact, if a facility has never had an energy audit a cost savings of 5% to 15% annually can usually be found easily with little or no capital costs required. These savings typically pay for an energy audit within their first year.
New buildings can typically operate with less than 50% of the energy requirements of an older building. While some capital costs are involved in upgrading older equipment in buildings, the return on investment is typically recouped in 3 years or less.
As new technologies are adopted in the workplace, energy use has increased dramatically over the past few decades. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), total electricity consumption in commercials buildings has almost doubled since official EIA surveys began tracking use.