Lawrence Kavanagh, Vice President—Manufacturing and Technology, American Iron and Steel Institute
Kelly Kissock, Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Dayton (Ohio)
The 2007 ACEEE Summer Study was the 6th biennial ACEEE conference on Energy Efficiency in Industry. Participants from around the world gathered for three days to discuss technical, policy, and program issues related to increasing energy efficiency in industry. Presentations and discussions related to the theme, "Improving Industrial Competitiveness: Adapting to Volatile Energy Markets, Globalization, and Environmental Constraints." Attendees included energy decision makers from industry, equipment manufacturers, government policymakers, electric utility staff, energy consultants, leading industrial energy researchers, and academics.
Reflections on the 2007 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Industry
The 8th ACEEE “Industry” Conference lived up to its title of “Improving Industrial Competitiveness: Adapting to Volatile Energy Markets, Globalization, and Environmental Constraints,” with the themes of volatile energy markets, globalization, and concerns about global warming providing undercurrents for the entire conference. Concerns about global energy markets were put into context with the opening plenary on tight energy markets, and the conference concluded with the closing plenary on the industrial implications of peak oil and gas. The growing concerns about these themes were reflected throughout the conference by the 250+ attendees, with energy efficiency emerging as the response to these concerns by the manufacturing sector.
This year’s conference saw a higher fraction of first-time attendees, which reflects the growing interest in industrial energy efficiency, while many long-time attendees reported that they couldn’t attend because they were too busy implementing industrial energy efficiency in the field.
Notable among the first-time attendees were representatives from a number of organizations that are starting, or re-starting, industrial energy efficiency programs. One outcome of the Summer Study was a collective sense of the need to establish a network of industrial energy efficiency programs in order to share program experiences and collaboratively develop new program resources. ACEEE will work with the U.S. Department of Energy, Natural Resources Canada, and the Consortium for Energy Efficiency to help build this network, starting with the program staff that attended this conference. (Groups interested in being part of this network can contact the ACEEE Industrial Program.)
We heard from and about many leaders in industrial energy efficiency who are making energy efficiency a reality on the plant floor and increasingly in the executive suite. ACEEE took the opportunity to recognize three of these leaders as Champions of Industrial Energy Efficiency.
As would be expected, conference presentations highlighted the applications of a range of energy-efficient technologies, along with strategies for managing corporate energy use and selling energy efficiency to management. Key among the new themes that emerged was the importance of understanding how industrial investments are made. Several informal sessions were held around this investment decision theme, resulting in the organization of an industrial decision-making session for the upcoming ACEEE/CIEE Behavior, Energy and Climate Change Conference.
Furthermore, we anticipate that this topic will be featured at the 2009 “Industry” Summer Study.
Finally, in anticipation of the 2009 Summer Study, it is a pleasure to announce the Conference Co-Chairs: Dana Levy, Industrial Research Program Manager for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, and Raymond Monroe, Executive Vice President of the Steel Founders Society of America. ACEEE looks forward to working with these industrial energy efficiency leaders in crafting the program for the 2009 Summer Study.