The Non-Energy Benefits of Industrial Energy Efficiency : Investments and Measures

Abstract: Improved industrial energy efficiency is viewed as an important means in the reduction of CO2 emissions and climate change mitigation. Various energy efficiency measures for improving energy efficiency exists, but even evaluated as cost-effective, there seems to be a difference between the energy efficiency measures that theoretically could be undertaken and which measures that actually are realised. On the other hand, industrial energy efficiency measures might yield extra effects, denoted as non-energy benefits, beyond the actual energy savings or energy cost savings.Based on interviews and a questionnaire, results showed that the Swedish industrial firms studied had observed various non-energy benefits. However, few of the non-energy benefits observed were translated into monetary values and included in investment calculations. Results indicated that this non-inclusion could be explained by lack on information on how to measure and monetise the benefits, but even if not translated into monetary values, some of the non-energy benefits were sometimes used qualitatively in investment decisions. The utilisation of the benefits seemed to depend on the type and the level of quantifiability among the perceived benefits.This thesis has also explored energy efficiency measures and non-energy benefits for a specific industrial energy-using process – compressed air. A literature review on energy efficiency in relation to compressed air systems revealed a large variation in which measures that could be undertaken to improve energy efficiency. However, few publications applied a comprehensive perspective including the entire compressed air system. Few non-energy benefits of specific energy efficiency measures for compressed air systems were identified, but the study provided insights into how non-energy benefits should be studied. This thesis suggests that energy efficiency and non-energy benefits in compressed air systems should be studied on specific measure level to enable the observation of their effects. However, the studies also addressed the importance of having a systems perspective; the whole system should be regarded to understand the effects of energy efficiency measures and related non-energy benefits.

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