Energy efficiency - Smart Energy Decisions

Commercial, Demand Management, Energy Efficiency, Industrial, Finance  -  June 30, 2016

Energy efficiency investments will increase 68% next year, executive survey finds

Interest and investment in energy efficiency has reached an all-time high, according to a new report from Johnson Controls. 

Results of the company's 2016 Energy Efficiency Indicator survey, which polled more than 1,200 facility and energy management executives across the U.S., Brazil, China, Germany and India, show that 51% of respondents said their organizations are paying more attention to energy efficiency today than they did a year ago, with 72% anticipating increased investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy over the next 12 months.

In the 2013 survey, by comparison, 37% of global respondents reported paying more attention to energy efficiency and 42% planned to increase investments. 

In the U.S., investment in energy efficiency is expected to increase 68% in 2017, according to the presentation of the study given June 23 at the Energy Efficiency Forum in Washington, D.C.  And although cost reduction remains the primary driver, organizations are also increasingly considering energy security, customer and employee attraction, greenhouse gas reduction, enhanced reputation, government policy and investor expectations when making investment decisions. 

Toward that end, the survey found that 64% of U.S. organizations now have a carbon reduction goal, compared to just 41% in 2013.

The survey also explored barriers to investment, and found that in the U.S., that majority of respondents — 31% — listed lack of funding to pay for improvements as the single largest barrier. That was followed by uncertainty regarding savings/performance at 19%; insufficient payback or return on investment at 15%; lack of technical expertise to evaluate or execute projects at 12%; and lack of awareness about opportunities at 10%. 

Organizations with the majority of their facilities located in urban areas are more likely to invest in smart building and smart energy technology; the survey found that 64% of organizations in urban areas have invested in building management systems, while more than 50% have invested in the integration of building management systems with lighting, security, life safety or other building systems. In addition, 39% of organizations in urban areas have invested in on-site renewable energy and 24% in nonrenewable distributed generation; those organizations are also more likely to invest in energy storage and demand response technology, according to the survey results. 

A summary of the report is available here

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