India is getting into mission mode to reduce its carbon footprint. V Rishi Kumar reports
India is set to soon embark on a concerted effort towards energy efficiency on a mission mode.
With the government’s commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to reduce our carbon footprint by 33-35 per cent by 2030, with 2005 as base year, strict and implementable energy efficiency measures are required.
Over the past two decades, a number of initiatives have been taken, with the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) driving the changes, both through mandatory norms and voluntary initiatives.
As we look at the larger Cop 21, Paris Accord goals, it is time to pause and re-strategise to achieve new goals towards addressing climate change.
The recent CII Energy Summit 2018, where experts from across various sectors converged, served as a platform to look up to potential opportunities, challenges and prospects.
More light, from Roshni
Pankaj Kumar, Secretary, BEE, says “Over the years, the BEE has taken a number of initiatives and is now looking at playing a bigger role as we seek to target larger goals of climate change. Towards this, we are bringing various initiatives of energy efficiency under a single platform.”
“This platform will come under Roshni, a mission mode initiative of the Government. This will go to the Union Cabinet for approval and a National Mission on energy efficiency as a part of eight missions will be launched,” he says.
“Similarly, we had initiated an energy conservation code for commercial buildings. We are in the process of launching a similar code for residential buildings. Energy Conservation Guidelines will be prepared based on the pattern used in Japan and launched soon. The draft is ready and will soon be released,” Pankaj Kumar says.
To mark the beginning of a National Energy efficiency movement, the BEE conceptualised the country’s first State Energy Efficiency Preparedness Index in July 2018.
“This index will help streamline the efforts taken by different States and collectively contribute towards achieving our targets. In its true sense, this Index is truly a stepping stone to solving a bigger issue at hand,” says Ravichandran Purushothaman, President, Danfoss India.
“We are in the process of implementing our 100 Smart Cities initiative. The reality of the situation is that 75 per cent of the buildings that we need in this country are yet to be built. As a result, our energy consumption is only going to be on a steady rise,” he adds.
To put this in perspective, India’s energy consumption is steadily growing versus other major economies, as per the BP Energy Outlook. It is set to grow 4.2 per cent a year by 2035.
And India’s fossil fuel consumption will also steadily increase by then, overtaking China’s. In effect, our country is the third biggest emitter of greenhouse gases in the world, after the US and China. Taking into consideration all these factors, it is important to devise a plan to reduce the country’s energy consumption while increasing productivity across sectors.
There is no doubt that the Government is working towards creating a holistic environment where all stakeholders work towards reducing the energy footprint.
With BEE’s implementation of the Perform, Achieve & Trade (PAT) scheme, over 400 industries across key energy-intensive sectors, including aluminium, cement, chlor-alkali, fertiliser, iron and steel, pulp and paper, textiles and thermal power plants, reduced their CO2 emissions by 31 MT. This is around 2 per cent of annual CO2 emissions, within the first implementation cycle, under three years, indicating the potential to redefine the scope for energy efficiency.
India Inc gets into the act
CV Anand, Executive Director of NTPC, Operation Services, says, “Power sector has to invest significantly in transforming the older power plants into energy efficient and fuel efficient ones. There is potential to upgrade about 73 giga watts of capacity and bring about savings of around $3 billion in power bills.”
“Rising global temperatures call for better cooling systems and an energy efficient district cooling system and new refrigerants will help counter the effects of global warming. India has the potential to make a difference for a cooler planet,” says Purushothaman of Danfoss India.
India’s sustainability story will lie in the adoption of clean energy and energy-efficiency solutions to simultaneously provide modern energy to under-served populations, and ensure sustainable development.
Sanjay Singh, Chief Executive, ITC Paperboards and Speciality Papers Division, says, “India is a major IT power and we need to look at internet of things (IoT) as an enabler to bring in more efficiencies. Energy intensive manufacturing units like paper, steel, can harness the power of IoT and Industry 4.0 and use the power of data to streamline processes and improve efficiencies.”
Philip Mathew, Chief Manufacturing Officer, ACC Ltd, points out that “The Indian cement industry has become world class as economics, through energy efficiency, is a major driver of this transformation. From a situation where energy bills had accounted for 70-80 per cent, the industry has brought it down to about 50 per cent over the years.”
S Raghupathy, Deputy Director General, CII, says, “Indian industry has amply demonstrated that going the energy efficient way will not only facilitate a company to become globally competitive but also enable it in exploring untapped market potential and growth opportunities.”
At the recent CII Energy Efficiency Summit 2018 at Hyderabad, it was inspiring to witness how various sectors of Indian industry have gone that extra mile to further augment their energy management practices. Companies demonstrated that innovative ideas requiring zero investments could result in economic and ecological saving.
About 145 shortlisted companies showcased achievement of annual recurring saving of about ₹900 crore in the past three years by implementing 4,881 energy efficiency projects.
Each company had a story to share. Their success stories were around utilisation of renewable energy sources, use of waste material as fuel, better water management and reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
The Specific Energy Consumption (SEC) of companies has been steadily declining and many are increasingly using renewable energy sources.
Some of the areas where the industry could potentially improve further are greening of supply chain, online energy management and technology transfer.
“Going green makes good business sense,” is the mantra now.