Energy Management Services (EMS), the leading energy saving company (ESCO) in the Middle East, has appealed to authorities in Dubai and the UAE to launch an effective campaign to generate awareness about the need for curbing wasteful consumption of crucial water and power resources.
The call comes at a time when Dubai’s explosive population growth and heightened commercial and industrial activities have placed an unprecedented strain on the emirate’s electricity and water-generating facilities, resulting in power outages and water shortages.
Khaled Bushnaq, Managing Director, Energy Management Services said: “Dubai is today the regional hub for commercial, industrial, trade and leisure activities. This has resulted in a huge spurt in economic activities and led to a massive influx of residents, investors and tourists, that places an ever-increasing burden on electricity and water supplies and the environment.”
“This, coupled with rising costs of fossil fuels and heightened environmental concerns, makes it important to ensure judicious use of resources and prevent wasteful consumption, particularly in the peak summer season. We therefore urge the authorities in Dubai to launch an intensive awareness campaign this summer to educate the public about water and energy-saving practices. Reduction in energy consumption will not only result in significant cost savings to the government and consumers, it will also help in conserving valuable resources that are required for power generation and water supply,” he added.
As per last available official figures, residential consumers made up 65 per cent of the total 281,353 consumers registered with Dubai Electricity and Water Authority [DEWA] in 2004, generating a demand for 5,120 Gigawatt Hours [GWh] that accounted for 31 per cent of the power consumed. The second major group are commercial customers comprising of 32 per cent of the total number of consumers and responsible for 41 per cent or 6,680 GWh of the total power consumed.
Similarly, demand for water during the peak season rose by ten per cent to touch 184 MIGD [million gallons per day] in 2004. Most of this demand came from Dubai’s residents who comprised a majority 79 per cent of DEWA’s 226,007 customers and accounted for 61 per cent or 32,618 MIG of the water consumed. Commercial establishments, who make up 20 per cent of the Authority’s customer base, accounted for 22 per cent or 11,809 MIG of the water consumed.
Industry data reveals that demand for desalinated water has grown in the rapidly developing Arab region at an annual average of six per cent as compared to the three per cent global average, compelling governments to pump in an estimated USD 10 billion into ongoing and planned projects to boost capacity. But with a surging population and large-scale economic diversification across the GCC, governments predict a further investment of an estimated USD 100 billion would be required over the next 10 years to meet escalating demand for water.
“In such a scenario, energy and water conservation plays a vital role in environmental protection by slowing down the depletion of scarce, non-renewable resources and ensuring their availability for the future. This can be achieved through behavioural change, operational improvements and investment in new technology or better design for which an effective educational campaign that will increase public participation in adopting such measures is essential,” Bushnaq pointed out.
He added: “Simple actions taken by individuals and commercial establishments can result in considerable energy savings and protection of the environment. For instance, switching off a computer monitor at night can save as much energy as it takes to toast 20 slices of bread or unplugging the microwave when not in use can too save 80kg of carbon dioxide a year. The public needs to realise that standby power accounts for 10 per cent of the power consumption at an office or a household; this is a small example of how paying attention to minor details can result in substantial savings in the long-term.”
EMS is driven by the belief that sustained energy management solutions are part of the controllable budgetary expenditure for any organisation. This fact is supported by the actual results EMS achieved by implementing energy management projects in residential and commercial buildings which achieved annual cost savings of up to 35 percent in addition to substantial capital savings in the building construction costs. It specialises in building customised energy management solutions for existing facilities as well as energy optimisation solutions for projects at the design stage. In both categories, EMS clients cover a wide spectrum of user groups, including residential complexes, industries, community centres, commercial complexes, shopping centres and hotels & resorts.
· Keeping the lights switched on in an empty meeting room overnight can waste enough energy to make 250 cups of tea
· Switching off a photocopier at night and weekends can save enough energy to send 50 faxes
· Switching off a monitor at night can save as much energy as it takes to toast 20 slices of bread
· Stand by power accounts to 10% of the power consumption
· Installing shading devices or window films can reduce carbon dioxide emissions by more than 2%
· If all employees of a 4000 people company switch off their monitors during holidays and at weekends, it can save enough energy to provide cooling for 100 houses through out the summer
· Activating the sleep settings of your monitor and your computer can save enough energy in an hour to make 4 cups of tea.