CHANDIGARH–Playing it cool! major companies take on climate-friendly challenge by cooling their operations in their energy efficient ways through a new initiative launched on Friday by the international non-profit—the Climate Group in partnership with the Alliance to Save Energy. Big business set to slash CO2 emissions. Indian manufacturering, hospitality and retail and a middle-eastern retail giant are among the first companies to sign up, reflecting increasing demand for cooling in emerging economies especially as the impacts of climate change take hold.
These include auto and farm equipment manufacturer—Mahindra and Mahindra and Mahindra Holidays and Resorts India as well as Godrej Industries Limited (chemicals ), Godrej Consumer Products Limited(home care, hair care), Godrej Agrovet (farming and food) and Dubai-based retailer Majid Al Futtaim .
The launch comes just ahead of Climate Week NYC 2019 (September 23-29) and will see companies working to lower their CO2 emission while boosting their bottom line and improving overall competitiveness.
These are joined by global buildings technology and solutions company Johnson Controls, keen to lead by example on efficient cooling across its own operations.
All of the signatories are already committed to smarter energy use as part of EP100, a global initiative led by The Climate Group in partnership with the Alliance to Save Energy. By taking up the EP100 Cooling Challenge, they aim to progress more quickly toward their energy productivity goals and benefit from greater economic output per unit of energy consumed.
Helen Clarkson, Chief Executive Officer, The Climate Group, said, “This is about preparing your business for the future. With electricity demand from air conditioners alone set to more than triple by 2050, companies have an immediate opportunity to invest in energy efficient cooling that will lessen further climate impact and generate substantial financial savings. I congratulate those first to sign up to the EP100 Cooling Challenge – we look forward to seeing their plans come to life.”
Mahindra & Mahindra is conducting trials of the latest cooling technologies with a view to replacing old equipment. The majority of the company’s energy use is from cooling in office blocks. Its new plant in Chakan, India, is fitted with the latest available in cooling technology.
Anirban Ghosh, Chief Sustainability Officer, Mahindra Group, said: “Cooling is a big user of energy in Indian corporations, especially in office blocks. Technology is now available so that cooling can be carried out more effectively than in the past and in a greener way. Cost savings while contributing to lower emissions is an ideal approach – that’s why we’re proud to be one of the first companies to sign up to the EP100 Cooling Challenge.”
He added, “Post instalment of the energy efficient cooling systems we expect to save 30 per cent on the annual running costs – so it will pay itself back in a few years.”
Three of GILAC’s four companies are signing up to the EP100 Cooling Challenge. The companies have more than 90 manufacturing plants and offices in India and overseas, many of which are large and use significant amounts of energy for refrigeration and air conditioning.
Having already introduced measures to improve the energy efficiency of their cooling systems, including replacing chillers and monitoring direct and indirect emissions, the companies will now look to improve cold-chain logistics, storage, and air conditioning in commercial spaces. They also plan to invest in the Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies.
Nadir Godrej, Managing Director Godrej Industries and Chairman and Non-Executive Director of Godrej Agrovet Limited (GAVL), said, “Our office buildings and food and dairy operations consume a significant amount of energy for cooling, and the efficiency of our cooling systems directly impacts on the quality of our products. By taking on this Challenge, we want to reaffirm our commitment toward climate change mitigation and bring a greater and more immediate focus on increasing efficiencies across our refrigeration and air conditioning usage.”
He added, “Energy efficiency generally gives us excellent returns – even a small reduction in energy use translates to financial benefits and savings of CO2. We love the idea of collaborating to improve the planet and save money simultaneously – we believe in optimization rather than sacrifice.”