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Facilities managers to seek big savings in energy usage

Projects should build in efficient energy management systems at design stage, says EMS

There has been a sea change in the way facilities managers now view management of energy in their projects and buildings, according to a top official of a specialist firm.

“Awareness-levels about the financial benefits of energy management are going up steadily in the UAE. Till a few years ago, most facilities managers, when approached with the idea of sustained energy management solutions, reacted with the belief that energy bills were the least controllable of all budgetary expenditure. Today, this situation has improved to a great extent thanks to sustained education and awareness programmes carried out by UAE’s government, EMS’ own awareness programmes and efforts of regional NGOs and the media,” said Khaled Bushnaq, Energy Management Services managing director.

“The demand for energy management solutions can only grow, as more and more organisations become aware of the financial benefits of these measures,” said Bushnaq. “These measures become even more important keeping in mind the current construction boom in Dubai and in the UAE. With most projects seeking to incorporate cutting-edge technologies, we are very excited about the growth potential of the market for energy management solutions.”

He said incorporation of efficient energy management systems at the design stage are projected to have saved an estimated Dhs18.8 million in future energy bills for projects that were advised by EMS. The company claimed that in the first half of this year, energy management in existing facilities has generated operational savings of over Dhs2.6 million for clients.

EMS energy management solutions are customised to broad applications. These include energy conservation solutions for existing facilities and energy use optimisation solutions for projects at the design stage. In both categories, EMS clients cover a wide spectrum of user groups, including residential complexes, individual villas, community centres, commercial complexes, shopping centres and hotels and resorts.

In the existing facilities market segment, the hospitality industry and shopping complexes lead the way in investing in energy management solutions. For EMS clients in the hospitality industry, energy savings peaked at just over 19% of the average monthly energy bills. For the commercial complexes, the monthly energy savings were marginally higher at just over 20% of the average monthly bills.

In the case of projects at the design stage were residential towers and complexes in the UAE where projected energy use would often be a 24-hour phenomenon, especially in common areas, for example, a building’s lobby. These registered the highest extent of capital savings. While residential towers average a capital saving of between Dhs2-2.5 million with energy conservation solutions, large residential complexes can average as much as Dhs10-12 million worth of energy savings.

For projects at design stage, operational costs can be reduced by incorporating intelligent energy management techniques in the electrical, mechanical and civil/structural design of the building. EMS experts also provide stringent review of tenders and equipment supplied to ensure compliance with energy management techniques and standards.

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