India has identified energy saving potential of about 23% of electrical energy being used which has the potential to reverse the power situation from ‘power deficit’ to ‘power surplus’ nation. Energy Efficiency Cell in POWERGRID is created as one of the business verticals with the objective to create inroads into reduction of carbon footprints and energy intensity across all sectors. The concept of efficiency can be applied in energy extraction, transportation, conversion, as well as in consumption. The thrust areas where it can make a substantial impact are mining, electricity generation, transmission & distribution, industrial production & processes, mass transport, building design, construction, lighting, household appliances, heating, ventilation and air conditioning.
India has limited resources for conventional energy and is dependent on the imports for coal and oil which consumes a lot of foreign exchange. According to the reports of World Resources Institute (WRI), India’s energy demand will more than double in 2030. For a nation like India where internal resources are limited and external resources are costly and uncertain, the future lies in renewable energy and energy efficiency.
As per Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Energy efficiency is the fifth fuel after wood, oil, nuclear and green source. There is awareness in this area of energy efficiency world over as the investment towards improving energy efficiency pays over a short period of time.
OBJECTIVES OF ENERGY EFFICIENCY CELL
An energy audit is a preliminary activity towards instituting energy efficiency programs in an establishment. It consists of activities that seek to identify conservation opportunities preliminary to the development of an energy savings program.
A. The Role of an Energy Audit
To institute the correct energy efficiency programs, the areas/ processes which consume energy more than the requirement is to be identified. It also needs market knowledge of the availability of energy efficient appliances/ devices to suggest replacement/ modifications besides inculcating awareness about energy conservation in our day to day operations. The audit is a techno commercial activity involving 50% time in extensive measurement for establishing accurate base line data and the remaining 50% in analysis and recommendations.
B. Contents of an Audit
An energy audit involves review of past data, measurement, estimation and finally the action plan for conservation of energy. In doing so, it assesses the effectiveness of management structure for controlling energy use and implementing changes. The energy audit brings a detailed report which normally contains the following:
1. Analysis of energy use
A detail analysis is made of energy usage for various purposes in the premises/ plants/ establishments. Energy usage are analysed vis a vis the requirements. The market knowledge is used for the analysis to identify better energy efficient equipment for replacement with the view of pay back in terms of energy savings over a period of time.
2. Identification of energy projects
Opportunities for energy savings can range from the simplest, such as lighting retrofits, to the most complex such as the installation of a co-generation plant. The energy audit team identifies projects which are cost effective and also suggests the probable sources for implementation.
3. Cost benefit analysis
Based on the areas offering opportunity for energy conservation, techno economic analysis is done that are financially viable and has a reasonable payback period. For capital investments the internal rate of return (IRR) and net cash flows are calculated to evaluate the financial viability. Alternatives are analysed in terms of the costs of implementing the project versus the benefits that can be gained. For example for installing a heat plate exchanger to recover waste heat, calculations are made of the total cost of installation and compare that with the savings derive from recovering waste heat. It makes sense to go on with the project if there is a net positive benefit from the project.
4. Action plan to set implementation priority
After cost benefit analysis, an action plan is developed to ensure that the opportunities are implemented. The action plan includes all the major steps for implementing the opportunity including the appropriate time for implementation.
POWERGRID’s EXPERTISE IN ENERGY EFFICIENCY
POWERGRID being one of the world’s largest Transmission Utility, has been working in energy intensive sector for decades. As on date POWERGRID has 17nos. Energy Auditors and Energy Managers certified by BEE and 6nos. Energy Management Professionals (MBA Energy Management). POWERGRID keeps training their empolyees in technical and on the job to keep abreast with the latest technology to take up challenging assignments in Energy Efficiency.
From the inception, POWERGRID has been conscious of designing their transmission system to be energy efficient with low line losses. The transmission loss in POWERGRID transmission system is around 3% which is in par with global standard. POWERGRID also carried out energy audit of its substation with third party to identify areas requiring further improvements and recommendations are implemented to set a model in transmission sector.
POWERGRID has a dedicated Energy Efficiency Cell to take up Energy Efficiency related assignments. The dedicated staff work full time in the area of Energy Audits and keeping up with the latest developments. Advanced and Sophisticated measuring instruments are deployed to accurately assess the savings. POWERGRID has developed standard procedures and norms for audit of various sectors. The team regularly carries out audits of various sectors to contribute its bits towards energy conservation drive of Government of India.
POWERGRID is also undertaking energy audit of one sample substation of State Transmission utilities as pilot to spread awareness of Energy Efficiency. The effort will continue to bring all transmission utilities to follow energy efficient path and reduce energy wastage.
POWERGRID has build capability for energy auditing of Electrical transmission and distribution system, Buildings and industries. POWERGRID is also associating energy auditors who have expertise in energy intensive sectors such as thermal stations, steel, cement, textile, paper, aluminium and chemical sectors to expand its business.
POWERGRID is actively considering forming an Energy Service Company (ESCO) to carryout large energy efficiency implementations to build energy efficient nation.