05. 3. 2013

Haystack Connect: How to Reach The Last Frontier of Facility Automation

By Greg Fasullo

Chief Executive officer
EnTouch Controls

I had a great time at the Haystack Connect event yesterday presenting on the hardware panel with my message about how to save the U.S. economy $380 million through energy efficiency.

Small Facility Automation: The Last Frontier

The event was in Chattanooga and is a so-called “open forum” with no organizing entity, but rather is run by the “companies, communities and people who are leading the way to more efficient and sustainable buildings.” Since EnTouch Controls is definitely doing that, it was a great place for me to speak.

I titled my presentation “The Last Frontier of Facility Automation,” because technology is making it possible to finally deliver energy management automation to small commercial facilities (<25,000 sq ft), which comprise 90% of the 5 million commercial facilities in the U.S.

These facilities – which include retail stores, restaurants, schools and small business offices – have the highest energy density of all category of all buildings combined.  In fact, take the smallest-sized facilities – those from 1,001 sq. ft. to 5,000 sq. ft. – and you can see that they use nearly 18 kwhr per year per square foot, which is 66% higher energy intensity, than facilities in the 10,000 sq. ft. - 25,000 sq. ft. range.

Now, these facilities can tap energy management systems thanks to low-cost wireless and cloud technologies to put into place the same sophisticated, yet easy-to-use automation capabilities that the bigger facilities have.

Thus, they are the last frontier, but really all we need to do is to scratch the surface of the last frontier to have a significant impact.  By my calculations, if just 10% of restaurants and retail outlets adopted an EMS, the economic savings could be $380 million.

Environmentally, the impact would be dramatic as well. I calculate a reduction of 5.8 million megawatt hours of electricity, an added savings of 8.8 million barrels of oil, which combined would take 3.8 million tons of CO2 out of the atmosphere.

Universal energy efficiency is truly the last frontier and can bring with it a huge impact on our businesses and our environment.
Check out our Energy Management Services For Restaurants page.

Check out our Energy Management Services For Retail page.

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