“Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. I have worked with a small wind technology for three years, from when it was commercialised by Eveready in this country and I am here to talk to you about the impact of small scale renewable interventions on industrial practices.
To start, let’s look at: energy usage as a process. I know that you have been considering things like this all day, and I’ve done enough energy audits to know that sometimes we get a little vague. I want to bring something sharply into focus:
Of all the energy we put into a process, only a small portion is used in the activity it is intended for (useful energy) the rest is either lost or wasted.
By attacking waste in the process we can see the same results at a fraction of the cost and by-product. But just to define it for the purpose of my discussion Energy Efficiency is any activity that shifts us away from energy intensive practices. Energy intensity and inefficiency are the targets as we showcase what wind can do.
Are we efficient?
Simple answer is No! Theory of constraints states that the constraint is elevated to a priority in all organisational practices. This has never been true for energy practices as you can see the older the technology the less consideration energy consumption was given. As you can see, the efficiency levels have a negative relationship with their age of existence; with the exception of the human body (I’m always telling my brother that we are essentially lazy creatures) but to highlight a positive, at least we’re up from 10%.
Why are we worried about consumption? Why do we need to elevate energy as the greatest constraint in industrial operations today?
• 60% of Coal and other fossil fuels have been consumed in the last 200 years
• 85% of the world’s industrial activity powered by non-renewable sources
• Exploration, transportation and combustion has the greatest environmental impact
Even for a developing country we are making our mark on the world if you look at the infra-red usage map, which means you are looking at a map of how much energy we are creating.
Energy intensity is a measure of energy efficiency and is calculated as units of energy per unit of GDP (US$). South Africa is one of the worst in the world. Only countries that are into strip mining and oil extraction come close to us and sit in a comparative bracket.
Taking a closer look that we see the lack of productivity with specific reference to energy consumption rests firmly on the shoulders of industry and commercial entities. How many of us go home at night and lecture the kids about turning off lights etc when we ourselves have left computers etc on at work?
How do we use so much energy?
I think you get the picture, however I’d like to focus in on the electricity element of energy usage.
When we were cavemen, we knew about energy diversification. A different power source for the best suited activity. Then 200 years ago, we become “civilized”. Our energy usage was almost solely wood-based. Then, with the dawn of industry, our power usage shifted to be largely coal-based. Then we struck oil. Now, we see a phenomenon we have not seen before. All the power sources are coming together in a downward trend, which brings us to the dawn of diversity.
South Africa’s inability to move with the times, for many reasons, including our gigantic coal resource, throws us up as almost unique in the world with our lack of diversity. You should look at this graph and see some serious carbon project opportunities.
So what can we do to remedy this situation?
• Enhances energy security
• Reduces cost and emissions
• Protects against disruptions
• Hedges against price increases
• Reduces commercial risk
• Diversify energy supply
• Turn energy challenges into new opportunities
• Growth opportunity in off-grid activities
By the end of this workshop number 1 will be pretty much exhausted. So I’m going to focus and give you the 101 around effective capex investment into energy diversification.
Mostly because there is a lack of information and we all need this information.
The traditional energy process includes
1. Heat boils water
2. Water turns to steam
3. Steam pressure turns turbine
4. Turbines turns electric generator
5. Generator produces electricity
6. Electricity powers light bulbs
7. Light bulbs give off light and heat
It is important to note that: The more conversions, the less energy efficiency achieved
The impact of energy diversification reduces the number of steps and increases the overall efficiency.
If you’d like to read about all the different types of renewable sources please visit http://www.kestrelwind.co.za/.
But I’ll be solely focusing on wind, as it is the most efficient and newest commercialized technology with major applicability and growth potential in the energy efficiency fight.
Do we have enough wind?
Yes we do.
A wind system as a supply system looks like this. It has a power source (obviously), a voltage limiter that smooths and optimizes energy output and a controller that manages the system between active demand and storage.
(All the different uses of wind Click here)
We know what we’re talking about, because we live and work this everyday. This is what we (Eveready) are contributing.
• Research for renewable energy technologies
• Resource assessment
• Development of technologies
• System implementation and projects
• Renewable energy applications: productive uses, telecom, micro-enterprise
• Total hybrid integration (PV/wind/diesel)
And this is what you have to gain:
• Reduced energy bills
• Increased competitiveness
• Increased productivity
• Improved quality
• Increased profits
• Supply reliability
• Energy security is the risk management practice to maintain growth and profit
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