Energy Performance Indicators (EnPI’s)

Paul Downing

One of the most important but often overlooked aspects of an environmental management system or energy management system is the setting of appropriate key performance indicators and monitoring. Quite often I will visit organisations who have objectives to reduce energy consumption or reduce waste but the KPI’s used to measure the performance against the desired objective is at best arbitrary.

Setting KPI’s that are relevant to an organisation’s energy objectives and business ideals are the lifeblood of any serious management system. Most organisations wouldn’t argue that the ideal is to reduce energy consumption as well as the financial costs associated with it but in so many cases when asked to show how the metrics are being gathered or reported, the methodologies are many and varied. Yes you can measure energy use via energy bills, mains meters, sub meters, data-loggers, mass balance, cost but how do you consistently measure data month on month so that a comparison can be made year on year for the purpose of reporting against your particular objective? If one of your energy objectives is to reduce consumption in kWhrs per man hours of production or kWhrs per square foot of production space then it is necessary to measure both metrics accurately and consistently in the format set for your objective i.e. don’t set an objective of reducing energy consumption by 10% on a baseline year in kWhrs/100 man hours worked and then gather together all energy bills and timesheets for the year to start data crunching retrospectively.

A properly implemented monitoring system that reports at regular intervals and takes into account mitigating circumstances (weather, downtime, sickness, maintenance) will provide a far more accurate reflection of the actual picture than a desktop exercise months after the event.

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