Energy Efficiency has been a global trend; due to increasing energy costs and the environmental regulations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Energy Efficiency refers to improving the performance of building systems, to reduce energy consumption, and provide building occupants with a comfortable, safe, and attractive living and work environment. For example, an energy-efficient 12-watt LED bulb provides the same level of light as a 60-watt traditional bulb, but consumes 75-80% less energy and emits less heat radiation.
Usually, energy in residential and commercial facilities is consumed by lighting (25-30%); heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) (50-55%); miscellaneous and plug loads (e.g. appliances, electronics, water coolers, heaters, data centers…etc.) (10-15%).
Studies have shown that buildings constructed before 2015 consume more energy, due to diverse factors, not limited to the aging of the building infrastructure and inefficient equipment. On the other hand, recently constructed buildings have adapted new construction technologies, better insulation methods, new efficiency standards, and environmental regulations. Even equipment, such as Lighting and HVAC Units now feature advanced technologies, higher energy efficiency, and are more eco-friendly. Upgrading the infrastructure of existing facilities has a potential of 35-40% reduction in energy consumption, with adequate energy solutions, depending on the nature of the facility, operation periods, and the existing systems/equipment.
Al Salem Johnson Controls, an Energy Services Company (ESCO), certified by the Saudi Energy Efficiency Center (SEEC), stated that Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) is an integrated approach to increase energy and operational efficiency; lower maintenance, and repair costs; and reduce carbon emissions and environmental impact.
The ESPC process starts will an ESCO’s engineering team visiting the entity’s facilities for a preliminary energy audit; to determine each facility’s feasibility and potential saving opportunities, and then recommend customized energy efficiency solutions to suit each facility and meet its special requirements. The ESPC is applicable in diverse sectors; including the public sector, education, retail industry, food and beverages, banking, hospitality, healthcare, or manufacturing.
Energy Efficiency Solutions
The available solutions vary in different sectors and as per the results of the preliminary energy audit. But there are many solutions that can be applied in most facilities, the top being: Lighting Solutions; retrofitting the lighting system, for example by replacing traditional lights with LEDs, contributes to an average savings of up to 40%-60%, depending on the nature of the facility and operation hours. The LED retrofit has the shortest payback compared to other building improvements.
When it comes to HVAC Units, the older the units, the lower the efficiency, and the higher the operational and maintenance costs. Therefore, upgrading old units with efficient technologies or replacing them with new advanced units, will contribute to raising operational and energy efficiency, while reducing maintenance, repair, and spare parts costs. For example, but not limited to, the VSD technology in (YORK) Chillers contribute to reducing energy consumption by about 30%, compared to old chillers not featuring this technology.
The Building Management System (BMS) connects all building control management systems, HVAC, lighting, security management, and fire protection systems, to work together as an integrated unit, through a unified monitoring platform. This will enable the facility owners to run the equipment only when it is needed, thus significantly reducing the operating hours during times when the building is under-utilized or unoccupied. BMS will typically save 15-20% of energy.
Additional upgrades or efficiency solutions include not limited to Air Compressor Network Modification; as a large amount of energy is wasted through these networks and outdated air compressor units; which could be saved through several measures and techniques. Also, many industrial facilities are generating on-site power, in which a large amount of energy is wasted, with a huge potential for waste heat recovery and its conversion to useful energy through Co-generation & Tri-generation.
In general, combustion in Boilers and Boilers Networks is not very efficient; due to leakages inside and outside combustion chambers. The same applies to poorly insulated pipe networks, where most of the heat goes unutilized. Furthermore, Heat Pumps use waste-heat that would otherwise be rejected to the environment; increasing air temperature. Heat pumps can deliver heat for less money than the cost of fuel.
Al Salem Johnson Controls hosts a portfolio of smart, secure, sustainable, and customized energy solutions to further enhance the performance of commercial and industrial facilities. But what distinguishes Al Salem Johnson Controls, is not only being an ESCO, but being a leading "one-stop destination" for all integrated requirements; including HVAC, fire safety and security systems, and building management and control systems. The solutions engineering and customization help meet the most delicate project needs, from simple to complex requirements. The Company’s partnership with customers does not end with the provision of solutions and units, it goes beyond across the entire project life cycle, with a full range of aftermarket services.