Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Energy Audit Help for Small and Mid-Sized Plants

(Editor's Note: Don't let the word "audit" scare you. Call it an "assessment" or a "profile," if you must, but the idea is simple: you can't manage what you don't measure!)

The U.S. Department of Energy's Industrial Assessment Centers (IACs) and the National Institute for Science and Technology's (NIST) Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) are dedicated to helping small and mid-sized industrial plants meet their unique energy efficiency challenges. Now, they are joining forces in a new partnership that will offer an expanded reach of services to improve the energy efficiency, environmental performance, and global competitiveness of these plants. DOE Assistant Secretary Karsner stated, "Approximately 200,000 small and mid-sized plants in the U.S. pay a total of $50 billion per year in energy costs. This initiative has the potential to help these manufacturers reduce enegy costs in some cases by up to 30% per year." Through this new collaboration, IACs and MEPs will assist plants through plant assessments, technical tools and information, and training opportunities. ITP's university-based IACs conducted more than 500 plant assessments last year, identifying about $150 million in energy, waste, and productivity savings. In 2006, MEPs assisted nearly 25,000 manufacturers through technical expertise and services.



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