Energy Efficiency is the new power source

Our energy consumption continues to increase. However, as the economy grows, we are starting to notice a trend that our energy consumption isn’t keeping pace. In fact, the growth in energy consumption is slowing down, despite GDP being on the rise.

On the whole, we have become no less productive, but rather we have become much more efficient. For example, LED lighting and other such energy saving technology in the consumer market means that we are starting to do more with less, and the same applies to industry. It is true that energy costs are rising, which has lead to a number of initiatives by various industries to cut back on energy usage and make the most efficient use of energy.

For consumers too, the pocketbook is the driving factor behind a switch to energy efficiencies, and not necessarily a drive to become more environmentally friendly. Governments around the world are stimulating, and sometimes forcing the shift, however. Banning incandescent light bulbs in Europe has, combined with the decreasing costs of other technologies, led to, for instance, the rise of LED bulbs despite CFL bulbs being a longstanding alternative.

Governments are also encouraging and mandating heavy industry to become more energy efficient with incentives and schemes such as cap and trade and setting guidelines and restrictions on pollution.

Another consideration and stimulation towards increasingly efficient use of energy is the fact that our grid networks and infrastructure are ageing and operating at increasingly high capacity. Not only is the consumption of electricity becoming increasingly efficient, so too is the delivery. With the use of smart technologies, grid infrastructure can be better managed and utilized. Just finding these efficiencies can already help supply some of our energy needs and decrease the capacity that is needed to supply the network, thus practically making energy efficiency a new source of energy.