Johnson Controls released their 5th Annual Energy Efficiency Indicator survey this month. The survey asks global executives and building owners about their energy efficiency priorities, practices, investment plans and financial evaluation criteria.
In a first, respondents cited ‘increased energy security’ as motivation for pursuing energy efficiency measures. More specifically, respondents from China and India rated energy security as the #2 driver of efficiency measures, while those in Europe listed it as #3. All respondents listed ‘energy cost savings’ as a primary driver.
The Defense industry could emerge as a leader in addressing energy security concerns. Lockheed Martin and Honeywell have both been approved by the Department of Energy as qualified Energy Service Companies (ESCOs). In that capacity, they plan and execute Energy Savings Performance Contracts (ESPCs), whereby energy conservation measures (e.g., LED lighting, improved insulation, ground sourced heating and cooling) are installed and paid for over time with the energy savings.
In addition to deploying energy efficient technologies, defense contractors aim to implement microgrids. A microgrid enables organizations to prioritize the criticality of energy consuming devices. When power is disrupted, the microgrid automatically turns off non-critical devices and maintains power to the highest priority systems. On-site renewable energy systems and stand-by generators are installed to provide reliable power to critical systems for an extended duration.
A huge opportunity to deploy microgrids already exists at U.S. military installations. As market research firm SBI Energy explains: “The majority of U.S. military bases are powered by public electrical grids, which in some instances lead to as many as 300 power outages per year. These interruptions weaken military readiness and security. In the face of a terrorist attack or natural disasters, reliance on conventional energy supplies may be inefficient and may even be detrimental to military functions.”
SBI estimates the global microgrid industry reached $4B in 2010, and the military microgrid segment is expected to top $1.6B in 2020, a 375% increase from today’s $330M market.
2011 Energy Efficiency Indicator: Global Results --
High-Tech Weapon Makers Set Sights on ‘Smart Microgrid’ Market: