As the world embraces sustainable energy solutions, industrial facilities find themselves navigating a new landscape of energy efficiency. Utilities are rapidly expanding their renewable energy sources, introducing intermittent generation, and sparking a fundamental shift in the way energy consumption is managed. In this dynamic environment, the concept of “time of day” has taken center stage, redefining the value of kilowatt hours both economically and environmentally.
Traditional energy efficiency measures are no longer sufficient to meet the demands of the changing energy landscape. Saving energy is critical, but doing so at the right time of day adds a new layer of complexity. Utilities now implement Time of Use (TOU) pricing models, which means energy costs fluctuate throughout the day based on demand patterns. Navigating these varying rates without impacting production or operations can be a challenge for industrial facilities aiming to reduce expenses while adhering to sustainable practices.
In this evolving scenario, industrial energy efficiency service providers have a vital role to play. Influencing customers to save energy requires more than just offering generic solutions; it demands a tailored approach that aligns with each facility’s specific requirements and operational constraints. Achieving this level of customization calls for strategic relationships and a profound technical understanding of industrial facilities to drive meaningful change.
One potent tool in the arsenal of energy efficiency providers is “load shifting.” This technique involves strategically adjusting the timing of energy-intensive processes to align with periods of optimal energy generation and lower electricity rates. The results can be transformative, benefiting the industrial facility, the utility and the environment.
For instance, a customer Cascade Energy has worked with in the Denver, Colorado area Identified that over 90% of their energy use stemmed from one piece of equipment. The energy demand created by this equipment led to substantial demand charges and high Time of Day (TOD) energy rates, making its operation financially burdensome and environmentally unfavorable.
After strategic discussions with operations staff, Cascade was able to work with the customer to develop and implement a load shifting strategy. The energy-intensive equipment’s operation was rescheduled to early mornings when wind generational resources were abundant and energy costs were lower. Conversely, during the peak afternoon period when the facility entered its high-demand phase, the load was curtailed to avoid costly TOD energy rates.
The impact of this load shifting approach was profound. By making these well-informed adjustments, the customer achieved a remarkable 35% reduction in energy costs. Furthermore, the local utility was able to credit significant net benefits to this low-cost operational measure, reinforcing the positive environmental impact and overall sustainability of the solution.
This success story exemplifies the potential of strategic load shifting in revolutionizing energy efficiency for industrial facilities. By optimizing energy consumption to coincide with favorable renewable energy generation and lower TOU rates, companies can effectively reduce their carbon footprints while experiencing substantial financial savings.
To learn more about load shifting and how you can implement these strategies, contact one of our energy experts.