Linking Energy Efficiency and ISO: Creating a Framework for Sustainable Industrial Energy Efficiency
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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Linking Energy Efficiency and ISO: Creating a Framework for Sustainable Industrial Energy Efficiency


Industrial motor-driven systems consume more than 2194 billion kWh annually on a global basis and offer one of the largest opportunities for energy savings. In the United States (US), they account for more than 50 percent of all manufacturing electricity use. In countries with less well-developed consumer economies, the proportion of electricity consumed by motors is higher-more than 50 percent of electricity used in all sectors in China is attributable to motors.To date, the energy savings potential from motor-driven systems have remained largely unrealized worldwide. Both markets and policy makers tend to focus on individual system components, which have a typical improvement potential of 2-5 percent versus 20-50 percent for complete systems. Several factors contribute to this situation, most notably the complexity of the systems themselves. Determining how to optimize a system requires a high level of technical skill. In addition, once an energy efficiency project is completed, the energy savings are often not sustained due to changes in personnel and production processes. Although training and educational programs in the US, UK, and China to promote system optimization have proven effective, these resource-intensive efforts have only reached a small portion of the market.The same factors that make it so challenging to achieve and sustain energy efficiency in motor-driven systems (complexity, frequent changes) apply to the production processes that they support. Yet production processes typically operate within a narrow band of acceptable performance. These processes are frequently incorporated into ISO 9000/14000 quality and environmental management systems, which require regular, independent audits to maintain ISO certification, an attractive value for international trade.This paper presents a new approach to achieving industrial system efficiency (motors and steam) that will encourage plants to incorporate system energy efficiency into their existing ISO management systems. We will describe an Industrial Standards Framework prepared for China, also applicable elsewhere, that includes national standards and a System Optimization Library. ISO work instructions are part of the Library, so that a plant can easily incorporate projects into their ISO Quality Environmental Manual. The goal is to provide a plant-based mechanism that helps each company maintain their focus on energy efficiency commitments, provide visibility for its achievements, and provide verification of results for financial backers (including carbon traders) to help stimulate much greater industrial energy efficiency.

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