15 Feb 2011 10:02:12
Energy portfolio management
Many building owners and operators would like to know how their individual property stacks up against others, either in their geographical region or in their industry sector. They want to know how energy efficient the building actually is compared so similar buildings.
Energy consumption of buildings emits greenhouse gas emissions. Buildings do contribute a sizable amount of emissions, which means that they are also sizable users of energy and resources, as well. As energy is one of the most significant costs facing any business today, it's important to understand how the operation actually uses its energy and opportunities for improved efficiency.
If business executives want to contain burgeoning operational costs and establish their position in a re-emerging marketing place then they must learn to manage their energy portfolio. To master this field, executives must analyze and understand what their energy portfolio actually looks like. This should be measured at not just the building level, but at the asset level. The overall energy portfolio is, after all, the sum of the energy needs associated with each and every asset.
Ultimately, energy portfolio management must focus on improving efficiency. Once the entire portfolio is determined and every component of energy usage identified, benchmarks can be established. In other words, in terms of energy efficiency, you are not even at "square one" until you can fully picture and determine what your baseline truly is.
When you can track and assess energy consumption at the asset and the facility level, you can compare and contrast. For building owners and operators looking for data to compare themselves against, the EPA has developed the Commercial Building Energy Consumption Survey, which is conducted by the Department of Energy every four years. Thousands of buildings across the country are analyzed, their characteristics noted, and energy use determined, to provide a database of similar buildings.
The Department of Energy databases are one source of information to help you understand where you are and where you should be in terms of your energy portfolio management. Disparate organizations will also need to compare department to department and facility to facility. A concerted effort to establish an energy portfolio management system will help to reveal this data and foster true, company-wide, efficiency potential.
It is definitely advantageous to compare how your buildings perform against a database of similar buildings across the country. However, your primary focus with the information revealed within energy portfolio management is to determine how you can consolidate and improve internally. When you match up asset performance information under given situations with an energy analysis, you build a position of strength.
Expect organizations that make a real effort here – your competitors, if not you – to truly break away, achieve real efficiencies and competitive advantage. Comprehensive asset and energy portfolio management provides a level of intelligence that is far from prevalent in the boardroom of today.
Verisae helps measure, manage and reduce equipment and energy costs including the related business and environmental impacts of carbon emissions. The Sustainability Resource Planning ("SRP") software platform improves operational efficiency, protects brand integrity and helps ensure regulatory compliance for distributed enterprises across many industries. Verisae delivers a broad range of sustainability solutions to dozens of clients globally with thousands of daily users including an extended network of third-party suppliers. Verisae's integrated sustainability platform actively tracks millions of assets across thousands of sites worldwide.