Over 100 energy managers, utility experts, and other industrial sector vendors and stakeholders gathered in New Orleans on June 20-22 for the Industrial Energy Technology Conference (IETC). IETC was a rare opportunity for the industrial energy community to network and learn about industrial innovations, energy use and waste reduction programs, and the latest in state and federal initiatives affecting industry. Two Better Plants partners, Charter Steel and Nissan North America, were honored at the conference with 2017 IETC Energy Awards.
IETC kicked off with an Energy Managers Workshop led by seven speakers, including the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Pete Langlois, who presented on the new 50001 Ready program. As a testament to the recognition of savings opportunities in energy management, this year’s workshop was one of the most heavily attended in its history.
The workshop was followed by twelve technical sessions and panel discussions and over forty individual presentations, including many authored or co-authored by DOE, National Lab experts, and Better Plants partners Eastman Chemical Company, General Mills, and Pactiv:
- A Proven Methodology for Studying Energy-Water Technology Efficiency: Findings from the Seawater Desalination Bandwidth Study
- Daily Management of Primary and Secondary Utilities at General Mills
- Financing CHP Projects
- Industrial Energy Efficiency Programs: How to Ensure the Value Proposition to Manufacturers
- Manufacturing Energy Bandwidth Studies
- Maximizing Return On Invested Capital for the Enterprise Energy Management Program
- Plant Water Profiler Tool for Industry
- Reduction of Water Load on TPA’s Steam Supplied Distillation Column
- Smart Manufacturing Technologies and Data Analytics for Improving Energy Efficiency in Industrial Energy Systems
- Tools for Accelerating Adoption of ISO 50001 in the U.S. Department of Energy
- U.S. DOE’s Energy Treasure Hunt Exchanges In-Plant Trainings – DOE Resources, Early Results, and Lessons Learned
Wednesday also included a keynote speech by ICF Vice President Duncan Rotherham, who provided a comprehensive overview of the current state of the North American energy sector. He also discussed interesting trends, such as large private energy users like Amazon, Google, and Dow Chemical beginning to directly acquire hundreds of megawatts of renewable power; Amazon, for example, acquired 233MW of solar and 417MW of wind in 2016 contracts. Rotherham closed by emphasizing the importance of industry, utilities, and state and federal government partnering to better incentivize industrial energy efficiency, pointing to an “opportunity for increased competitiveness and profitability.”
IETC ended on Thursday on a high note, with 2017 IETC Energy Awards presented to Tari Emerson of Charter Steel in the individual category and Nissan North America in the corporate category. Both Tari and Nissan’s representative, Brett Rasmussen, highlighted their companies’ participation in Better Plants in their respective presentations. In fact, both partners were recipients of 2017 Better Practice awards at the Better Buildings Summit earlier this year. “Take advantage of the technical support and the free programs that are available through the Better Plants Program,” Emerson remarked. “One of the first things we did was to sign up for an In-Plant Training session.” Charter Steel ultimately hosted two, focused on processing heating and an energy treasure hunt; the latter uncovered almost $900,000 in potential annual energy savings at a single facility.