Obstacles in Implementing Energy Efficiency Measures
Introduction of an energy management system itself does not bring immediate savings, but it enables control over energy processes, leading to a better understanding of system operations. This provides companies with a basis for better planning of preventive measures and prompt corrective actions in case of deviations from optimal operation (e.g., machines not being turned off, air and water leaks, etc.).
Our experiences and analyses show that there are often obstacles in implementing energy efficiency measures in large companies, which are associated with various factors.
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Neglecting energy costs as they are often treated as fixed expenses.
When organizations consider energy as a fixed cost, they often fail to recognize how reducing energy consumption can contribute to cost reduction. Neglecting energy costs can hinder the implementation of energy efficiency measures, as organizations do not recognize the financial benefits of reducing energy consumption.
Fear of change.
Fear of change is a common barrier to the implementation of energy efficiency measures. Organizations may fear that changes in their operations will cause instability or failure. This fear can lead to persisting with the existing mode of operation and impeding efforts to implement new and more efficient energy usage practices.
Focus on primary functions and neglect of technological advancements.
Organizations often focus on carrying out their primary function or activity, such as product manufacturing or service provision. This can result in neglecting opportunities for technological improvements and the adoption of energy-efficient technologies. Lack of focus on technological advancements can hinder progress in energy efficiency.
Lack of incentives or rewards for employees to implement technological improvements.
If organizations do not incentivize or reward employees for implementing technological improvements related to energy efficiency, there may be a lack of motivation to carry out such changes. Employees may not be encouraged to seek new ways to reduce energy consumption or implement innovative practices.
Slow entry of young professionals into leadership positions.
Young professionals often bring fresh ideas, innovation, and knowledge of modern technologies that can contribute to energy efficiency. If young professionals do not have opportunities for advancement or entry into leadership positions, new opportunities for improving energy efficiency may be overlooked.
Belief that the existing system cannot be improved.
If organizations believe that their current mode of operation is the best or that they cannot achieve significant improvements in energy efficiency, they may refrain from seeking new opportunities for optimization and energy consumption reduction. Such beliefs can lead to stagnation and prevent the implementation of innovative solutions and practices for more efficient energy usage.
It is important to promote a proactive mindset and openness to the possibility of improvements, as technological solutions and practices that can contribute to reducing energy consumption and improving energy efficiency are often available.
Despite evidence of multiple returns on investments in energy efficiency throughout the lifecycle of buildings, devices, and products, companies often persist with energy-inefficient solutions due to initial higher costs. Moreover, current financial support inadequately encourages investments in new and energy-efficient technologies. Overcoming these barriers requires a comprehensive strategy that includes raising awareness of long-term financial benefits, supportive legislation, as well as education and encouragement for companies to implement energy efficiency measures. Only in this way can we achieve greater energy efficiency, reduce negative environmental impact, and gain a competitive advantage.