O2. Energy intensity

 

Calculation

O2: Energy intensity =

(Energy consumed in production processes + Energy consumed in overhead)

 / Normalisation factor

Unit of the indicator: MJ/normalisation factor


Why this indicator is important

Any energy production, whether non-renewable or renewable, depletes non-renewable resources (including habitats, fossil fuels and uranium), generates GHGs or both. For example, producing a wind turbine requires metals, plastics and other materials. It needs to be transported and it occupies land. Although the energy intensity of the world’s production processes is constantly improving, the volume of production is increasing even faster, leading to ever-increasing levels of energy consumption.

Energy intensity is calculated for production processes and overhead. As with GHG intensity, the energy intensity of the inputs can be included by extending your accounting boundary. That of the product use stage is calculated separately.

 

Interpretation

As with GHGs, if total factory gate price is used as the normalisation factor, this is an indicator of intensity relative to the value of production. It does not show the total amount of energy consumed. Ideally, actions will be taken at the facility to ensure that the intensity of energy consumption will decrease sufficiently so that even with increased production, the total energy consumption remains stable or decreases.
A review of the detailed data will provide insights into which processes and overhead activities contribute most to the overall energy consumption of the facility. Priority should be given to the largest energy-consuming processes or overhead activities.

Energy efficiency could be increased by replacing outdated equipment, especially electric motors, or properly maintaining existing equipment. Within the facility, conservation can be improved by monitoring where losses occur (such as escaped heat, equipment in standby mode and unused or excessive lighting).

 

Related issues

As with the GHG intensity indicator, it is important to monitor both energy intensity and total energy consumption.