Energy management of the enterprise as a systematic approach to optimize resources
The difficult economic situation in the country, with all the ensuing consequences in terms of rising prices, the need to change strategic sales markets, sharply declining purchasing power, led to the need for a significant reduction in costs and a radical review of business processes within enterprises.
Due to rising energy prices, energy consumption has become a fairly large part of the budget. And here, as in any other business, a systematic approach is the basis for effective resource optimization.
The implementation of energy management systems of companies is often implemented on the basis of international standards of the ISO 50000 series, in particular 50001 (Energy Management Systems requirements with usage guidelines). This standard is designed in such a way that it is suitable for both small businesses and large industrial enterprises. Developed on the basis of the method of continuous improvement (Plan – implementation – control – improvement), it allows you to implement a policy of efficient use of energy resources to save and care for the environment.
For the correct and efficient organization of energy management, first of all, it is necessary to determine the places with the highest energy consumption, as well as the zones of loss of energy, heat, water, etc. For this it is necessary to conduct an energy audit. It is worth noting that the organization engaged in this type of activity in the past few years has appeared quite a lot, however, when choosing a contractor, you need to be sure that the company can offer really high-quality solutions to modernize existing systems.
Based on the results of energy audits and identifying weak spots in terms of energy losses, a modernization plan is being developed. Depending on the capabilities of the company, there are several options:
- Maximum use of environmental conditions. All over the world, the norm is the analysis of natural conditions and the adjustment of systems according to them. The sunny side of the building needs less artificial lighting during the day, in autumn and winter sunny days, the need for heating will also be less. For example, relatively recently, one beverage company specifically cut through several windows on the sunny side of one of the workshops and thus received energy savings of 5-7% on lighting. Another example, the management company installed light brightness sensors and temperature sensors in a serviced office center, and was able to save 10-15% due to automatic regulation of artificial lighting and batteries, adjusting to the brightness and intensity of the heat of natural light.
- Modernization of building systems. Modern systems of ventilation and air conditioning, heating in the building are almost a necessity. However, there are situations in which the modernization of equipment, or the transfer of gas equipment to cheaper sources provides effective optimization at a much lower cost than buying a new one.
- Green energy. The most relevant for real estate is solar energy. At this stage in Ukraine, the payback period of solar panels is still quite large, however, every year, solar power plants are becoming less expensive, their efficiency is increasing due to their improvement, and the prices of the electricity we are used to are also rising. So in the near future, these technologies will become the most relevant method of energy management.
- Responsible energy handling. The training of personnel in energy saving also gives its, sometimes considerable, results. Turning off the light when leaving the room, arranging the furniture in such a way that as much natural light as possible falls on the work surfaces, as well as turning off all office equipment at the end of the working day, etc. All this will help optimize the company’s resources.
Implement all approaches or choose one, gradually or immediately, for each company to decide independently based on their capabilities, however, it is obvious that without energy management the company will not be able to remain competitive and profitable for a long time, and even more so, to develop in accordance with modern realities.