The path to permanent enterprise efficiency

As the global community unites to fix the CO2 mistakes of the last 50 years in the next 10, specialist in energy management, Schneider Electric South Africa, has a clear view of the energy challenge.

January 25, 2012

As the global community unites to fix the CO2 mistakes of the last 50 years in the next 10, specialist in energy management, Schneider Electric South Africa, has a clear view of the energy challenge.

“We need new solutions, new thinking and new companies to lead us into an era in which we can truly do much more while consuming less,” says Gys Snyman, vice president: Energy Efficiency at global specialist in energy management, Schneider Electric South Africa.

The solutions to the energy challenge are multiple and complex. In most cases, they rely on a stronger and more efficient collaboration between key stakeholders, including facility and security managers, IT managers and machine or production managers. “Requisite levels of business efficiency involve system dynamics across platforms and providers like never before,” adds Snyman.

Doing more with less is a familiar mantra at companies in South Africa and around the world, especially when it concerns energy use. Managers at all levels are looking for meaningful ways to permanently reduce energy consumption and boost performance for the sake of the environment as well as the bottom line.

“This is with good reason,” says Snyman. “Energy demand is expected to double by 2050, and some experts forecast the energy demand of the machine-to-machine Internet to be 100-times greater than the current human-to-human network. We are learning the hard way that the earth’s energy capacity is finite. You don’t have to be a scientist or economist to recognise the simple outlook for energy supply and demand. Simply put, energy is expensive today and it promises to become even more costly in the future.”
 
According to the World Energy Outlook 2009, IEA/OECD, as energy demands escalate from all aspects of commerce and culture, the most acute pain point is that due to intrinsic inefficiencies, 33 units of energy consumed at the point of use require 100 units of primary energy – the coal used to supply that energy unit. “It follows that the war on waste – a focus on ‘negawatts’, or watts not used – will deliver the best returns for business,” says Snyman.

He explains that those returns must come from all levels of an enterprise to be truly efficient. From point-of-use components to enterprise-level energy architecture, meaningful efficiency is a pervasive mandate.

“But before you can drive business efficiencies and save energy, you have to be able to see it – and that’s where solutions from Schneider Electric South Africa come in,” he says.

“Our EcoStruxure Active Energy Management architecture is Schneider Electric’s response to the energy challenge as it turns a business into an efficient enterprise. That is, the solution is our method to creating intelligent energy management systems that are simplified, save money, and most importantly, reduce waste by enabling guaranteed compatibility between five critical domains: power-, process and machine-, IT room-, building- and security management.”

By taking multiple, siloed systems and adapting them to an integrated solution, EcoStruxure reduces redundancy in equipment, software and personnel.

“It is a proven methodology that empowers organisations to identify potential savings with increased visibility to their energy consumption, electrical equipment benchmarking, and estimated ROI reporting. As the only comprehensive, integrated approach designed for the digital economy and delivers capital and operational savings of up to 30 percent,” says Snyman.

As consumers, businesses and entire economies become increasingly reliant on technology, they insist that devices become more intuitive, more efficient and more intelligent. “With EcoStruxure solutions, Schneider Electric South Africa encourages them to expect the same of their energy,” concludes Snyman.