Energy Metering, Monitoring and Targeting (MM&T) is an energy efficiency technique. Based on the principle that ‘you cannot manage what you cannot measure’, MM&T techniques assist Energy Managers to:
- understand their energy usage
- benchmark consumption and set targets
- make decisions regarding operating practices
The purpose of monitoring and targeting is to relate your energy consumption data to the appropriate energy drivers, e.g. weather, production figures, in such a way that you get a better understanding of how energy is being used. In particular, it will identify if there are signs of avoidable waste or other opportunities to reduce consumption.
Data collection may be manual, automated, or a mixture of the two. To be effective in the long term, once an MM&T scheme has been set up, its routine operation must be neither time consuming or complex. An MM&T scheme will provide essential underpinning for current energy management activities and suggest new opportunities.
The type, location and design of the meters and sensors will play a huge part in the implementation of MM&T recommendations. Care should be taken when deciding the position and type of meter used to ensure that energy drivers can be accurately identified for individual departments, production lines and major individual energy consuming plant.
The system foundation of M&T lies in determining the normal relationships of energy consumptions to relevant driving factors (production throughputs, weather, available daylight, etc.) and the goal is to help business managers:
- Identify and explain excessive energy use
- Detect instances when consumption is unexpectedly lower than would usually have been the case
- Draw energy consumption trends (weekly, seasonal, operational…)
- Determine future energy use when planning changes in the business
- Diagnose specific areas of wasted energy
- Observe how the business reacted to changes in the past
- Develop performance targets for energy management programs
- Manage their energy consumption, rather than accept it as a fixed cost that they have no control over.
The ultimate goal is to reduce energy costs through improved energy efficiency and energy management control. Other benefits will include increased resource efficiency, improved production budgeting and reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.