TOP
STORIES
 1 of 5
16 Digital Signs You’ll Be Thankful You Didn’t Install
It's the time of the year to give thanks. Here are 12 epic digital signage failures you can be thankful you haven't witnessed on your projects — we hope!
 2 of 5
Times Square's Biggest, Most Expensive Digital Billboard Dwarfs All Others
Times Square's 24 million LED pixel screen being touted as the world's largest high-definition digital signage.
 3 of 5
Take CI’s State of the Industry Survey
It only takes a minute! Help CI take the industry's pulse and participate in research for our annual State of the Industry Report to come in 2015.
 4 of 5
Electrosonic Named 2014 Integrator of the Year
Celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2014, Electrosonic's leadership has its eyes on ensuring the firm lasts at least another half-century.
 5 of 5
Crisis Averted: How 2 Firms Came Back from the Brink of Disaster
SVT and Altel Systems share their tales of tumble and turnaround to help those who may face the same problems prepare for the worst.
How to Calculate Energy-Enhancing System ROI
The first step in driving energy savings is to measure and validate consumption. Then you know where to drive savings.

Article


Energy audits are essential to providing a baseline against which future projections of energy savings can be made when organizations pursue efficiency upgrades.
December 10, 2012 | by Aaron Stern

In this cash-strapped, energy-conscious time, organizations increasingly seek to maximize the efficiency of their networks and facilities. But before they invest in new technologies that will help them get the most bang for their buck, they must first look inward.

“What you don’t measure, you can’t manage,” said Jeff Drees, the U.S. country president of Schneider Electric. “So the first step in driving energy savings is to measure [and to] validate your consumption. Then you know where to go [to] drive savings.”

Making those assessments isn’t necessarily simple. The evaluation of current energy consumptions must be thorough and honest, and the projections have to be complete and reality-based.

“It’s really coming through with a quantification of what is their today-spend at an op-ex level, and then looking at what you would do with a performance contract to project into the future,” said Allen Breeze, Schneider’s senior vice president of power business.

Of course, leadership must have the will to make changes if efficiency is actually going to be enhanced.

As the director of the Health Safety & Environment division at TRW Automotive, a major car parts supplier, Rick Bell visits numerous plants around the country. He has dozens of facility managers with hundreds of wish-list projects big and small that would streamline operations and cut costs.

Related: The Rise & Impact of Smart Cities

“I went to my manager and I said, ‘Hey, how about we put aside $3 million of capital to invest in energy savings?,’” Bell recalled. The answer, in a nutshell, was that there’s no money for special pet projects.

“Our CEO and whatever’s focused on different things,” he said. “We’re building 20 plants in China.” These new Chinese plants might provide Bell the chance to implement new efficiency standards, hopefully thereby planting the seeds of a more open-minded corporate attitude toward energy efficiency.

“It’s a hell of a lot easier to put an energy-efficient compressor in than to try to make the compressor they bought last year, more energy-efficient,” he said. “I’m going around banging the drum. I’m really struggling to figure out how to motivate them,” he said. “We will get there – we’ll get there, but it’s a struggle.”

Once you’ve made the investments to increase efficiency, then what? Andy Schonberger is the director of Earth Rangers Centre for Sustainable Technology, an environmental education facility for children in Ontario, Canada. The LEED-gold certified facility uses a multitude of passive and active energy efficiency tools and monitors the facility’s energy and water use across 80 subsystems through an extensive metering system. The building even has its own waste water treatment facility which recycles 98 percent of waste water back into non-potable uses.

So it might not seem that Earth Rangers has a lot left to do when it comes to efficiency, but Schonberger said there is always low-hanging fruit.

About the author

Aaron Stern - Managing Editor
Prior to becoming the managing editor of CI, Aaron was a content editor for TechDecisions. As a reporter he has covered local, national and international news. Follow him on Twitter: @aarondstern.
View all posts by Aaron Stern
Social Bookmark or Share This
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • Yahoo! Bookmarks
  • Google Bookmarks
  • StumbleUpon
  • Technorati
  • Reddit
  • Windows Live
  • LinkedIn
  • Evernote
  • E-mail


  • Latest
  • Blogs
  • Photos
  • Resources



Recent comments

I am rather disappointed in the content of the article as well… to suggest that 4K resolution will in…

Posted by B. Bauman on 2014 11 24 · commented on
'5 Awesome Applications for 4K Video Projection'.

Are you sure that Almo is the first to offer these services? SYNNEX has been offering installation services…

Posted by Josh Aldridge on 2014 11 21 · commented on
'Almo Pro A/V: Installation as a Service?'.

RPM-AVS has been providing these services to the leading integrators in the US for over twenty years. After…

Posted by Rodney Milner on 2014 11 20 · commented on
'Almo Pro A/V: Installation as a Service?'.

Do you see WHY tuition is so high in college? It has nothing to do with better education and everything to…

Posted by Follow N Money on 2014 11 18 · commented on
'University of Oregon Builds Football Performance Center for Champions'.