Energy means any form of energy derived from fossil fuels, nuclear substances or materials, Hydro-electricity and includes electrical energy or electricity generated from renewable sources of energy or biomass connected to the grid.
– Section 2(h) of the Energy Conservation Act 2001
About 20% of worlds energy is generated from coal and about 60% of worlds energy is generated from oil and natural gas. Because of extensive use of fossil fuel, such as coal, oil and natural gas, as primary source of energy today, the harmful emissions of GHG (Green House Gasses) such as Carbon Dioxide increases the GHG level in the atmosphere which traps the extra heat reflected from the earth resulting rise in temperature. Carbon dioxide and some other gases in the atmosphere act like glass in a green house. They let Sun’s rays through, but trap some of the heat, which would otherwise be reflected back into space. This Green house effect always existed.
Scientists believes that global warming will cause the average World temperature rise by one Degree Celsius by the year 2020 and four Degree Celsius by the end of 21 st century.
Thus energy conservation has emerged as one of the major issues in recent years. Energy requirement in our country is increasing in a very rapid rate. India’s demand for commercial energy in 2020 is expected to increase by 250% from today’s level. Coal accounts for about 50% of primary commercial energy today and is further increase its share. Despite its low per capita CO 2 emission of less than 1 ton, India contributed over 4% of world total CO 2 emission in 2000.
While efforts are being made to improve availability of various energy sources, there is still a continuing gap between demand and supply of energy. Conservation and efficient utilization of energy resources play a vital role in narrowing the gap between demand and supply of energy. Improving energy efficiency is probably the most profitable thing that can be done in the short term.
Energy conservation is the quickest, cheapest and most practical method of overcoming energy shortage. It is found that there is major scope of energy conservation in electrical distribution system and in consumer’s installation.
While using energy, a considerable amount of energy is wasted. It is estimated that there exists a potential of saving of about 30% energy used by us in daily life. In our State, daily requirement of energy in peak hours is about 800MW. A 30% saving would yield a saving of more than 200MW, which is a considerable amount. This much saving would result in lowering power shortage considerably.
In India commercial energy demand is growing high at annual rate over 6%. It is estimated that by 2020 the total requirement of energy will be more than 250% of today’s need. But the supply of energy is not growing at par with demand.
By reducing consumption of energy through energy conservation also helps us to save precious fossil fuel like coal, gas, oil which are used by the generating companies to generate electricity. Also reduction of use of fossil fuel leads to reduction of emission of harmful gasses into the atmosphere.
The prime target sectors are the Domestic & Commercial, Industrial, Agriculture and large buildings, which are the main consumers of energy. By adopting proper energy efficiency in these areas, considerable energy conservation may be achieved.
Many energy efficient products, once costly and exotic, are now inexpensive and commonplace ones. A good quality Compact Fluorescent Lamp costs more than Rs. 500 a decade ago now costs around Rs. 120. They use 75 to 80 percent less energy than conventional incandescent lamps and also lasts more than 10 times longer. As a conventional lamp produces a considerable amount of heat, most of the energy consumed by a bulb to produce light is wasted as heat. As such, CFL lamps are more energy efficient. as they do not produce heat and consume about 20% of energy consumed by an incandescent lamp, while producing same illumination.
In India, general people use electricity for illumination purpose mainly in their houses in addition to running household appliances. So, designing the houses skillfully to be illuminated primarily by available daylight will result in considerable saving of electricity, which in turn will save money.
Designing a building with maximum utilization of daylight and use of energy efficient lamps and appliances will certainly reduce the cost of energy use, which in turn also will make a significant contribution towards ecology balance.
ENERGY CONSERVATION ACT, 2001:
Appreciating the potential and importance of energy efficiency, bridging the gap between demand and supply, reducing environmental emissions through energy saving, the Government of India enacted the Energy Conservation Act, 2001 to provide a legal framework to enable the economy to be energy efficient that came into force from 1.3.2002. For enforcement of the Act, a waiting period of five years from the date of enactment is provided in the Act. During this period, all the institutional infrastructure including formalities of issuing notification of Rules, Regulations and other norms, to be completed at the Central and State level and creation of awareness for efficient use of energy and its conservation among public.
BUREAU OF ENERGY EFFICIENCY (BEE):
The Govt. of India under Section 3(1) of the Energy Conservation Act, 2001 established a statutory body called Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE). The main function of the BEE is implementation of policy program and co-ordination of implementation of energy conservation activities. The BEE is under the Ministry of Power, Govt. of India and is headed by Director General of Energy Efficiency having its head quarter at New Delhi. The BEE has published specifications of several electrical equipments/ appliances on energy efficiency. The BEE launched the Energy Efficiency Building Code (ECBC) in May 2007.
STATE DESIGNATED AGENCIES (SDA):
As required under section 15(d) of the Energy Conservation Act, the Government of Assam designated the Chief Electrical Inspector-cum-Adviser, Assam as State Designated Agency to coordinate, regulate and enforce the provisions of the said Act in the State of Assam.
STATE ENERGY CONSERVATION FUND:
As per requirement of section 16 of the Energy Conservation Act, 2001, a fund called to be the State Energy Conservation Fund is to be constituted by the State Government for the purpose of promotion of efficient use of energy and its conservation within the State.
All grants and loans made by the State Government or Central Government or any other organization or individual shall be credited to the fund for the purpose of the Act. The fund shall be applied for meeting the expenses incurred for implementing the provisions of the Act.
- The Hindusthan Paper Corporation, Nagaon and Cachar regularly conducted activities such as awareness creation programme, Energy audit in the plants to achieve Energy Efficiency.
- As informed by Addl. Chief Engineer, PWD (Electrical), Assam, automatic switching devices have been fitted in streetlights in Guwahati city to reduce energy wastage. Arrangements have been made to fit energy efficient lamps in all Government offices/ buildings by PWD.
- The Dy. Chief Engineer, NF Railways informed that 14,921 fluorescent lamps have been provided in staff quarters, 39 automations done in pumps and provisions made in 73 LC gates for solar panel.
FUND ASSISTANCE FROM THE CENTER FOR CARRYING OUT ENERGY CONSERVATION WORKS:
Assam was selected among six SDAs in the country to provide fund assistance from the Central Government for EU-India Sustainable Energy Efficiency Initiative (EISEEI) project, which is initiated, by BEE and GTZ-IGEN, a key partner of BEE. A MoU was signed between SDA, Assam and National Productivity Council in this regard. A five-year Action Plan was prepared with the help of NPC and submitted to BEE. As per the said scheme, NPC will support the SDA for capacity building under financial assistance from the BEE. There is no financial commitment for the NPC service from the State Government.