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Energy and Asset Management

  
  
  

Can Energy and Asset Management Be the Same?

There used to be a clear line when it came to differentiating assets from liabilities. After all, one element was seen as a positive contributor and the other seen as a negative draw on resources. An asset represented a purchase or a resource that would help contribute to operation or growth and a liability, on the other hand, an expense of some kind.

In the emerging "new" economy, the line between assets and liabilities is becoming somewhat blurred. Specifically, many major organizations are beginning to treat one of their biggest liabilities of all in a different light and they are treating energy as an asset, as they seek to fully understand the implications of its use for the long-term.

There used to be a clear line when it came to differentiating assets from liabilities. After all, one element was seen as a positive contributor and the other seen as a negative draw on resources. An asset represented a purchase or a resource that would help contribute to operation or growth and a liability, on the other hand, an expense of some kind.

In business, we can assume that treating energy as an asset will help us to get the most out of its use and manage its implications more effectively. This is certainly a paradigm shift, but will help the organization to become far more efficient and more competitive as a consequence. No longer is it acceptable to treat each asset independently and to treat the associated energy use as a "necessary evil."

In recent months, the PEW Center on Global Climate Change surveyed leading businesses to calculate their best energy efficiency practices. Companies such as IBM, Toyota and Dow Chemical were involved in the survey and the conclusions were quite eye-opening.

Each of the companies surveyed reported that they had elevated their bottom lines, as a consequence of approaching energy as a core, manageable asset. In their organizations, energy and asset management went hand-in-hand to foster greater visibility.

Towards Energy Efficiency with Energy Asset Management

Principally, organizations surveyed by the PEW Center explained their decisions to treat energy and asset management from the same viewpoint. They reasoned that this would result in a means of not only saving money, but would help to avoid greenhouse gas liability, as well as improving employee morale.

No longer is an approach to energy efficiency seen as being incremental in the new economy. While many organizations have turned to greater energy efficiency solutions, the real savings appear to be in a less piecemeal approach. Rather than pinpointing individual items of equipment, it is far better to manage efficiency on an an organization-wide basis for greater effect.

Energy Asset Management and Energy as an Asset

If a plan is introduced to consolidate energy and asset management together, energy calculations across a broad slew of inventory could be included in the ultimate analysis of when and how each item of equipment was to be repaired or replaced. This falls in with the emerging practice that, by monitoring energy at the asset level, advance warning of impending failure can be achieved.

When energy and asset management is combined and energy is viewed as an important asset instead, benefits can extend beyond just bottom-line savings. Productivity can be increased and other resources can be saved, such as water, waste and excess labor.

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