In the middle of June, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) released the latest revision of ISO 50001:2011. This particular standard discusses the requirements with guidance for use regarding Energy management systems (EnMS). The desire of the committee was to develop a standard that would provide benefits for organizations large and small, in both public and private sectors, in manufacturing and services, in all regions of the world. ISO has stated that “ISO 50001 will establish a framework for industrial plants; commercial, institutional, and governmental facilities; and entire organizations to manage energy. Targeting broad applicability across national economic sectors, it is estimated that the standard could influence up to 60 % of the world’s energy use.”
Until now, the absence of an internationally recognized energy management standard has inhibited widespread adoption of best energy management practices. The new ISO 50001 international energy management system standard overcomes this barrier and offers organizations a proven approach to develop an energy management plan addressing critical aspects of energy performance—including energy use, measurement, documentation, reporting, design and procurement practices, and other variables affecting energy management that can be measured and monitored.
ISO 50001 is based on the Plan-Do-Check-Act approach to continual improvement, which supports energy performance improvement over time based on the best data available to the organization. Continual improvement of energy performance requires a comprehensive energy management system involving a variety of stakeholders within an organization. The standard does not prescribe minimum performance criteria, energy reductions, or targets.
ISO 50001:2011 can be purchased and downloaded directly from ISO’s website. If you own, operate, or maintain a business, I would encourage you to take a few moments to review this standard and evaluate it to determine how, if implemented, it can benefit your bottom line. Not only do I believe that each of us have a duty to utilize the resources we are given, or that are taken, in a responsible fashion but I also have seen firsthand how doing so can greatly impact profitability.
Energy is critical to organizational operations and is likely a major cost to most organizations, regardless of activities. When organizations consider energy efficiency, conservation, or management they should not do so on a whim with the often seen ad-hoc programs or as another “flavor of the day”. Organizations that truly understand the many implications are following this standard through the supply chain of their business, from raw materials through recycling. Every facet of the way we conduct our day to day operation or business has a link to energy and it is our job to find the link and increase efficiency.
Large organizations such as Dow Chemical, Nissan, 3M, and Marriott have realized the need for energy management. In response, all of these companies and more have joined a pilot program based on ISO 50001 to improve their energy efficiency, gaining global recognition for their commitment and improving their bottom line.
These companies are part of a demonstration program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) in partnership with the U.S. Council for Energy Efficient Manufacturing (US CEEM). The demonstrations, being done in phases across the United States, test the components of ISO 50001 and Superior Energy Performance. At the close of their demonstration project, these facilities will be positioned to seek ISO 50001 and Superior Energy Performance certification.
If your business wants to go beyond merely applying best practice energy management practices, and you want to take the next step of changing the way you do business and integrating efficient energy performance into your every day operation, I highly recommend you contact Allied Reliability or GPAllied for more details.