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Going digital for better energy management
SINGAPORE is encouraging businesses in the industrial sector to adopt new digital solutions to help improve their energy efficiency and curb carbon emissions. Digitalisation can help such industrial users - which account for half of the Republic's total energy use - more effectively gather and analyse relevant data that can help them take action to reduce consumption.
Under a typical digitalisation scenario, tools such as sensors and smart meters collect data on energy use and other conditions that affect energy consumption, such as climate. This data is then processed using artificial intelligence algorithms, and sent to devices that can automatically make the changes required to optimise energy use; such as switches in a building's cooling system that can adjust the energy being consumed.
According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), digital technologies are already widely used in many energy end-use sectors around the world. "More and more residential and commercial buildings are equipped with smart appliances and intelligent energy management systems. In the industry sector, advanced robotics and 3D printing are becoming standard practice," IEA said in an article on its website titled "Energy efficiency: Digitalisation".
ENERGY MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEM
One digital solution helping companies to become more energy efficient is the Energy Management Information System (EMIS), an online tool that enables different levels of an organisation, whether individuals or departments, to plan, monitor and take action to continually improve and maintain energy performance.
"In today's business environment, where there is increasing focus on sustainability measures and a shift towards climate-friendly governmental policies, it is important for companies to take early action to minimise energy wastage in their operations and to maintain a strong image of environmental responsibility," said Tan Meng Dui, CEO of National Environment Agency (NEA).
"Harnessing technologies, such as digital Energy Management Information Systems, is one of the ways companies can modernise their energy management processes. Through the collection and analysis of real-time data on energy usage and visualisation of data through dashboards, such systems allow companies to accurately identify performance lapses and quickly formulate cost-effective and targeted energy efficiency measures," he added.
Such systems use sensors to monitor energy use at systems level, as well as dashboards that show key energy indicators for performance tracking. Among other benefits, it helps energy managers identify opportunities for energy efficiency improvement, and to track the outcomes of improvement projects.
Said Mr Tan: "We encourage companies to continually evolve their operations using such tried and tested innovations, to grow their competitive edge, while contributing to the global fight against climate change."
Key features of an Energy Management Information System (EMIS)
- Real-time energy monitoring: Dashboard displays of real-time energy data and system level energy metrics using graphs, charts and tables
- Integration: Integration of EMIS with systems for better data access
- Alerts: Alerts and signalling to prompt operational staff to take corrective action when energy metrics deviate from targets or in instances of poor performance
- Optimisation: Optimisation and control of operating parameters to improve energy efficiency when EMIS is linked to control systems
- Diagnostics: Online heat and mass balance for operational health checks
- Reports: Customised management reports to support decision making, budgeting, target setting, tracking and benchmarking
Energy Efficiency National Partnership Awards
The Energy Efficiency National Partnership Awards (EENP Awards) aims to foster a culture of sustained energy efficiency improvement in Singapore, and encourage companies to adopt a proactive approach towards energy management by identifying and sharing best practices with other enterprises. There are four award categories for the industry:
a) Excellence in Energy Management
b) Best Practices
c) Outstanding Energy Manager of the Year
d) Outstanding Energy Services Provider of the Year
The EENP Awards also recognises public sector individuals and organisations that have demonstrated a high level of commitment towards sustained energy efficiency improvements and practices.
Excellence in Energy Management
This award recognises companies that have demonstrated a high level of commitment to excellence in energy management. The award recipients in this category are:
- HP Singapore Pte Ltd
- Roche Singapore Technical Operations Pte Ltd
This award recognises corporate teams which have implemented energy efficiency projects that have led to improvements in the energy performance of their facilities. The award recipients in this category are:
- ASM Technology Singapore Pte Ltd
- ExxonMobil Singapore Chemical Plant
- Petrochemical Corporation of Singapore (Private) Limited
Under this category, four companies also received the "Best Practices (Honourable Mention)" Award:
- 3M Singapore Tuas Plant
- Abbvie Operations Singapore Pte Ltd
- Asahi Kasei Plastics Singapore Pte Ltd
- Eastman Chemical Singapore Pte Ltd
Outstanding Energy Manager of the Year
This award recognises outstanding energy managers who have demonstrated leadership in driving EE improvements across their organisation, and played an instrumental role in promoting EE initiatives within their organisation. The award recipient in this category is:
- Lee Kum Chin - Abbott Manufacturing Singapore Pte Ltd
Best Energy Efficiency Practices in the Public Sector
The award recognises outstanding public sector agencies that have demonstrated exemplary performance and commitment to energy management efforts and have been proactive in implementing energy use improvements. The award recipients are:
- Hillgrove Secondary School
- Ministry of Home Affairs (Home Team Academy)