MRO Magazine

Global industry is accelerating investment in energy efficiency: survey

Monica Ferguson   

Food Industry Food & Beverage canada energy manufacturing net-zero report

Global survey commissioned by ABB and conducted by Sapio Research highlights current and future plans of companies to invest in energy efficiency to achieve net zero; 90 per cent will increase spending over the next five years, while 52 per cent plan to achieve net zero within the same period.

The Energy Efficiency Investment Survey 2022 targeted 2,294 companies in 13 countries, ranging in size from 500 to 5,000 or more employees. A key finding is that over half (54 per cent) of the companies are already investing in energy efficiency measures to achieve net zero, while 40 per cent plan to make energy efficiency improvements this year.

Growing impact of energy costs on profitability means that energy efficiency is receiving a higher priority yet cost and downtime are major barriers to investment. The survey comes in the wake of a recent UN report calling for concerted action from countries to cut greenhouse emissions at a faster rate.

“It is vital to help stakeholders across industry understand that net zero need not mean net cost,” said Tarak Mehta, President, ABB Motion. “Both suppliers and governments have a role to play in promoting the message that adopting energy efficient technology offers a fast return on investment while cutting CO2 emissions. The bottom line is that energy efficiency is good for business and good for the environment.”

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Industrial motor-driven systems hold huge potential for energy efficiency measures. Almost two-thirds of the survey respondents are upgrading their equipment to best-in-class efficiency ratings, such as high-efficiency electric motors controlled by variable speed drives.

The report highlights areas of concern, half of the respondents listed cost as the biggest barrier to improving energy efficiency and 37 per cent felt downtime was a barrier. While 41 per cent of respondents felt they had all the information needed regarding energy efficiency measures.

Nine out of 10 respondents indicated that rising energy costs are at least a minor threat to profitability, while over half (53 per cent) perceived it as a moderate or substantial threat. Despite cost being a significant barrier to investing in improving energy efficiency, cost savings were the most important reason for investing (59 per cent).

The Energy Efficiency Investment Survey 2022 is available here.

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