Every time I read an Energy Consumption audit, I snicker at the results/recommendations.

Often packaged in slick power point presentations, or even glossy binders with colored divider tabs, these reviews usually take many pages to present what could be done in a spreadsheet and a few paragraphs. Why; you ask? Because the appearance of value is often as important as the value itself, it seems. This is why personal computers are still about the same size as they were 20 years ago.

In essence, this is what energy audits report:
  1. You saved/spent more money this year vs. last year because it was hotter/cooler this year vs. last year.
  2. You saved money this year because you managed to turn things on and off better this year than last year.
  3. You saved money this year because you installed more efficient/alternative energy using/saving stuff that you didn’t have last year.
  4. You could save more money by using even less energy as demonstrated in B and C.
  5. You could save money by buying your energy on the retail market, where applicable.
That’s about it folks.

Here’s what kills me. These audits, for all the glitz and energy saving glamour, are absent the deeper examination to drive the results home.

For instance:

Just because degree days, year over year, were equal, and the client spent less, doesn’t mean there was an actual savings. Did decreased occupancy play a factor? Did working hour changes create a delta in peak demand? What about interruptions in business . . . ., etc?

Are the same considerations, et al, weighed into the benefits of retrofits, EE equipment, etc?

Further, is the payback clearly defined on recommendations for additional cost savings?

The moral to this story is simple. Beware of facilities maintenance managers bearing savings. Read carefully, and challenge the results not just for accuracy, but for practicality. Almost any facility can save money through better energy management, but let’s make sure it’s more than just a lucky accident.
Share To:

Strategic Sourceror

Post A Comment:

0 comments so far,add yours