Improved energy efficiency among industrial companies is recognized as a key effort to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases. In this context, benchmarking industrial energy efficiency plays an important part in increasing industrial companies' awareness of their energy efficiency potential. A method for calculating an energy efficiency index is proposed in this paper. The energy efficiency index is used to benchmark the energy performance of industrial small and medium-sized companies' support and production processes. This enables the possibility to compare the energy performance of single energy end-use processes. This paper's proposed energy efficiency index is applied to energy data from 11 sawmills that participated in the Swedish national energy audit program. The index values were compared with each sawmill's energy saving potential, as stated in the energy audits. One conclusion is that the energy efficiency index is suitable as an energy strategy tool in industrial energy management and could be used both by industrial SMEs and by governmental agencies with an auditing role. However, it does require a harmonized categorization of energy end-use processes as well as quality assured energy data. Given this, a national energy end-use database could be created to facilitate the calculation of an energy efficiency index.
Journal of Cleaner Production – Elsevier
Published: May 1, 2018
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