- California Analysis
- Climate Change and Forestry
- Developing Countries Studies
- Industrial Energy Analysis
- IPCC Support
- Modeling Energy Futures
- Project Based Activities
- SEAD Program Analysis
Industrial Energy Use Analysis
Industry consumes more energy and produces more emissions than any other sector of the economy. Nevertheless, little is known about industrial use patterns. This is mainly because the industrial sector comprises a diverse network of producers, technologies, and processes. As a result, a wide range of knowledge is required to accurately assess industrial energy consumption and then evaluate how to reduce that sector’s energy use and related emissions.
Our staff of engineers, systems modeling experts, economists, and policy analysts explores the key questions facing decision-makers:
- What are the recent industrial energy use trends?
- What are the emerging industrial technologies that influence energy use? What is the market for these technologies?
- How can policies and programs properly address industrial energy concerns? What are the best evaluation tools to measure program success?
- What is the potential impact of energy efficiency policies and measures on the industrial sector?
Berkeley Lab staff addresses these and other public policy concerns by performing trend analyses, technology and market assessment and policy evaluation
Technology & Market Assessment: Identifying Opportunities
What energy-efficient technologies are available for the industrial sector? Our staff performs assessments of available technologies and identifies the markets for these technologies. These assessments, which are critical to developing industrial sector energy policies, require technical and economic understanding of energy-saving measures and policies.
We assist in policy development by:
- Assessing existing and future energy-efficient industrial technologies to help determine potential market penetration, energy savings and emission reductions.
- Evaluating the financial viability of technologies.
- Identifying and developing suitable energy policy approaches based on our assessments.
- Developing scenarios of future energy patterns that evaluate the impacts of industrial technologies and policies.
Technology assessments identify energy-saving opportunities for industry. This "cost of saved energy" curve is from a Berkeley Lab study on electric steelmaking. Our analysis identified twenty-one energy efficiency options. Of these, fourteen were cost effective for the electric steelmaking industry. The industry could lower the average energy intensity of steel production in the U.S. by 2.9 GJ per tonne of steel by implementing these options.
Trend Analysis: Understanding the Past and Present
What are the past and present trends in industrial energy use? These patterns illustrate technological and structural changes in the sector. They allow for both international and inter-sectoral comparisons, and can indicate potential future pathways.
In studies of industrial energy use, our staff performs trend analyses that include:
- Examining changes in an industry’s energy-use patterns and identifying the causes of these changes.
- Identifying differences in energy intensity between countries, providing insights on industrial best practices and technology transfer opportunities.
- Developing methodologies to compare industries on a global basis or individual companies within a given sector.
Part of energy trend analysis is understanding the factors that drive trends. For example, an international comparison of energy use for cement production takes into account such structural factors as clinker production as a fraction of cement production to accurately identify differences in energy efficiency. The potential for energy efficiency improvement is measured as the difference between observed energy use and optimal performance, accounting for structural differences.
Agreements to meet specific energy use, energy efficiency, or greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets are used widely in the industrial sector. Such agreements can be viewed as a tool for developing a long-term strategic plan for increasing industrial energy efficiency that fully engages not only the engineers and management at industrial facilities, but also includes government, industry associations, financial institutions, and others.
The International Energy Agency has identified two broad categories of Voluntary Agreements: “(1) informal programmes, self-commitments and declarations, where the parties entering into the action with the government set their own targets and often do their own monitoring and reporting; and (2) more formal voluntary approaches where there is essentially a contract between the government and industry, or negotiated targets with commitments and time schedules on the part of all participating parties.” Voluntary Agreements typically have a long-term outlook, covering a period of five to ten years, so that strategic energy-efficiency investments can be planned and implemented. A key element of Voluntary Agreements is that they focus the attention of all actors on energy efficiency or emission reduction goals.
Internationally, Voluntary Agreements have been shown to result in increased energy efficiency, with the more successful programs even doubling autonomous energy efficiency improvement rates. In addition, Voluntary Agreements have important longer-term impacts including changes of attitudes and awareness of managerial and technical staff regarding energy efficiency, addressing barriers to technology adoption and innovation, creating market transformation to establish greater potential for sustainable energy-efficiency investments, promoting positive dynamic interactions between different actors involved in technology research and development, deployment, and market development, and facilitating cooperative arrangements that provide learning mechanisms within an industry.