Companies, factories, office buildings or shopping centres amongst others need to make use of a great amount of electrical energy every day so that they can perform their daily activity. In this new technological era known as the fourth industrial revolution or Industry 4.0, companies crave for differentiation, willing to provide added value to their brand, and a good means to fulfil it is through energy conservation.

The development of building activity entails more than 40% of the energy consumed worldwide, with the subsequent generation of pollution it implies. To achieve a reduction of electric power consumption, a first significant investment in the structures of the building needs to be carried out, however, such investment would return in a brief period thanks to the energy conservation derived from these corrective measures.

In Europe, the so-called “20-20-20 Movement” has been established to reduce the effect of energy waste derived from buildings activity. It is intended to reduce by 2020 the emissions of polluting agents up to 20%, as well as to increase up to also 20% the use of alternative energies. In other words, the nearly zero-energy consumption of buildings and factories is pursued, and to that end, they need as a matter of course to be self-sufficient through clean energies.

Advantages derived from energy conservation

Smart buildings or smart factories are one of the insignias of Industry 4.0. The main goal of smart factories is the smart allocation of available resources, by making less use of conventional energy sources in favour of clean or renewable energies, reducing costs and being much more efficient in terms of sustainability, an aspect for which clients have more and more regard.

  • Social awareness of the environmental challenges is a fact, and it has been verified that users are willing to pay more if they can ensure the accuracy that the product or service has been produced with following current sustainability standards, which is to say, companies that get involved in optimisation and the correct use of energy resources will see how their brand image improves.
  • Energy efficiency reduces energy expenses of buildings and factories, making companies become more competitive thanks to the reduction of production costs and the energy savings it entails.
  • The inclusion of new technologies, renewable energies and much more responsible use of any energy source will not only improve the user’s conception regarding the brand or company, but it will also unfold a wide range of working opportunities. Experts in areas such as architecture, engineers, computer technicians, interior designers, urban planners and information and communications technology (ICT) professionals, amongst others, have in front the opportunity of developing new systems in terms of energy efficiency, helping in the reduction of pollution caused by the emission of polluting agents into the atmosphere.

Although it is still soon to be talking about the real impact that new jobs can generate in the near future, estimation can be performed, considering that employment derived from this new model of smart edification meant in 2012 nearly 300,000 new jobs only in the United States.

  • Energy independence. Many countries have great high energy dependence, which come to reach in many cases 80%. The use of renewable energies makes such dependence reduce, thus benefitting local work and reducing costs derived from the purchase of foreign energy.
  • Environmental benefits. Major cities are the most damaged about their environment and their air quality due to a lack of vegetation and the massive convergence of buildings, people, means of transport, industry, etc. Aiming to relieve this situation, it becomes necessary to opt for temporary solutions such as the use of electrical energy in favour of higher use of natural energies such as solar, wind or geothermal energies.

Owing to the use of clean and sustainable energies, natural resource consumption diminishes, thus reducing environmental degradation, pollution, remains and the impact of gases being cause of the greenhouse effect.

Besides saving in financial terms, opting for alternative energy sources will entail an improvement of the environment and in people’s health.

  • A boost to innovation. Derived from the need of acquiring more efficient electrical equipment, buildings, factories and households, R&D is boosted and promoted, which vastly improves social, technological and human development. Thanks to this development, great progresses are achieved in less amount of time, achieving in turn greater industrial diversification and an improvement on the quality of life for mankind.

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