Scarcity of resources and the impact of climate change is a megatrend that drives the need to shape responsible attitudes to protecting our natural resources. This lynchpin behind the growing emphasis on energy efficiency and sustainable technologies challenges manufacturers to step away from a take-make-waste extractive industrial model in favour of a circular economy approach, which aspires to decouple from consuming finite resources while designing waste and pollution out of the system.
The phrase “reuse, prevent and repair” is unambiguously associated with environmental efficiency, but could serve as a mantra for a conscientious aftermarket Typically, the opportunities to save energy and reduce operating costs across industrial MRO markets are tied to overall energy consumption at the plant or on the shop floor. The choice to be intentional about energy efficiency and cost savings begins with selecting equipment and components that take advantage of various energy sources, while limiting the waste associated with the processes that transform that energy.
Take modern hydraulic systems for example. A hydraulically powered machine using “smart” and energy-efficient components (including valves, seals, filters) not only reduces the damaging effects of fluid friction, but also creates value and rapid ROI (return on investment), argues Aaron Weston, hydraulics specialist and owner, ASW Enterprises in Stratford, Ont.
Weston highlights research on global applications of electric motors in industrial settings that shows that about 60 per cent of electrical power generated is consumed by electric motors. This consideration throws light on increased production costs and pollution and motivates industry to optimize energy efficiency.