According to a newly released Schneider Electric Survey, 43% of energy leaders say their investment in energy efficiency next year is projected to be more than it was last year. Additionally, 22% said their projected investment would stay the same, and 10% reported their investment would be less than last year. The survey includes responses from 369 leaders in energy efficiency from business and government sectors and was intended to provide insight into the future of energy efficiency and challenges organizations face.
“With the majority of respondents reporting energy efficiency investments to be the same or more than last year, it’s clear that the benefits of energy efficiency are speaking for themselves,” said Chris Curtis, president and CEO, North America Operations, Schneider Electric.
Sixty-four percent of respondents reported energy cost savings as the biggest driver impacting energy management investment decisions. Government incentives came in second with 10%, followed by government policies and industry standards with 8%, executive mandate with 6%, and brand image with 5%.
The majority of respondents, 63%, reported they had invested in energy efficiency programs in the past 12 months. Specifically, the two most common energy management practices that respondents’ organizations have adopted in the past 12 months were tracking and analyzing data (29%) and energy audits (also 29%).
The respondents also shared their thoughts on which energy management approaches will take hold in the next five years, predicting that building automation (24%), efficient lighting (21%), and data center efficiency (16%) would become the most popular.
Other significant survey findings include:
- 41% of respondents cited tax credits or incentives as the energy policy that has had the greatest impact on improving energy efficiency in their organization.
- 60% of respondents said that they have someone in their organization responsible for energy management.
“While these results show good progress, we have a significant opportunity to do more,” concluded Curtis. “The U.S. currently ranks ninth in energy efficiency among the largest global economies, according to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. This is unacceptable. We have many opportunities right now—practical, tangible actions any business, government, or homeowner can take—to improve efficiency with a quick return on investment and immediate results.”