The International Energy Agency has come out with its World Energy Outlook 2013 projections. Each of the below imperative from the report should be serious enough to make planners and policymakers sit up in attention, and hopefully, stir up to action.
- Energy demand is set to grow one-third from 2011 to 2035
- 1.3 billion people lack electricity
- Renewed focus on energy efficiency, but CO2 emissions continue to rise
- Today’s share of fossil fuels in the global mix is at 82%; the strong rise of renewables only reduces this to around 75% in 2035
- Transition to a more efficient, low-carbon energy sector is more difficult in tough economic times, but no less urgent
- Current energy consumption puts the world on course for an increase in average temperatures of 3.6°C, far in excess of the 2°C the international community is aiming for
- As the source of two-thirds of global greenhouse gas emissions, the energy sector will be pivotal in determining whether or not climate change goals are achieved
- Evolution of the power sector will be critical to meeting climate change goals, due to the sector’s rapid growth and because low-carbon alternatives are more readily available
- The potential for energy efficiency is still far from exhausted: two-thirds of the economic potential of energy efficiency is set to remain untapped in our central scenario
- Energy efficiency improvements could mitigate high energy costs while concurrently addressing energy security and environmental concerns
- Regardless of the composition of energy supply, efficient and competitive markets can minimize the cost of energy to an economy
The roulette has rolled back on the slot of energy management and energy efficiency. Consider buildings, for instance. Together, they contribute up to one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions. As per United Nations Environment Programme Sustainable Buildings and Climate Initiative (UNEP SBCI), “if targets for greenhouse gas emissions reductions are to be met, it is clear that decision-makers must tackle emissions from the building sector. Mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions from buildings must be a cornerstone of every national climate change strategy.”
Any building facility needs to be viewed holistically as a comprehensive system, with its different constituent infrastructure components like Energy, Power, HVAC, Lighting, IT Center, Security, Renewable, Electric Charging and so forth. Sustainable Buildings Solutions, when implemented, are designed to have positive impact on People, Planet and Performance.
Energy Efficiency solutions are, of course, not just limited to buildings. There are any number of solutions available for industry and services – spanning across diverse segments like Water, Oil & Gas, Food & Beverages, Mining, Minerals & Metals, Marine, Healthcare, Smart Energy etc.
We are all stakeholders, whether as citizens or companies, agencies or administrative bodies, industry or institutions. All alike have a hand in not only confronting but in conquering this global energy imbroglio – for our future generations. If at all, let us err on the side of action, not apathy.