For years I have heard clients make the observation that energy is becoming a "business within my business." I think this is their way of saying "while I want to be efficient, economical and up to date in my energy management, my core business isn't energy, and it takes a lot of time, money and effort to get up to speed to manage our energy needs effectively."
When asked to meet with a client's "Energy Manager", we often find that person to be a property manager, maintenance engineer, accountant or purchasing agent who were "drafted" into the energy management function. Their energy responsibilities were added on top of previous core responsibilities which unfortunately didn't go away. While these managers are invariably smart and capable, they find the current energy environment, with rapid technological and regulatory change, extremely challenging.
If growing energy complexity was true in the late 80's when building managers were finding themselves dealing with issues like deregulation, "choice", PURPA, third party suppliers for retail gas and electric, performance contracts, efficiency and an evolving emphasis on sustainability, today it can be even more confusing. Changing regulations, the emergence of various forms of economical and commercially viable renewable generation, district energy, microgrids, battery storage, control systems that monitor and predict market conditions, real time dispatch of distributed energy resources and, the revenue options offered by utilities and Regional Transmission or Independent System Operators (like PJM), are just some of the more recent developments that complicate energy management. These tools and options provide cost savings, and revenue opportunities that were not even on the radar screen a few short years ago.
Yes, today energy management is more than ever "business within a business." While judicious purchasing of gas and electric, efficiency upgrades and automated building management provide the foundation of an energy management program, technologies like demand management, economic dispatch, energy storage and self-generation are both disruptive factors and highly effective tools for those seeking to optimize energy operations and expenditures.
As an example, even facilities that already have emergency generation, solar panels, cogeneration, thermal storage, load shedding capability or other forms of distributed energy resources on their site, or available to them, may find themselves "under-deploying" these assets. Sometimes it pays to self-generate (if your costs are less than what is available from their host utility) and other times it makes sense to take everything from the utility. Regional Transmission Organizations or Independent System Operators also offer a wide array of "revenue enhancement" in the form of payments for things like Economic Dispatch, Synchronous Reserve and avoided Installed Capacity charges. Local utilities also provide opportunities for savings with avoided Network Integrated Transmission Service charges, special tariffs, net metering and even virtual net metering. When you layer in the dozens of incentive, grant and low-cost loan programs offered by utilities, state and federal governments and various agencies, what was once a relatively straight forward purchasing exercise becomes one of the more challenging aspects of facility management.
Shoreline Energy Advisors was created to offer commercial, industrial, government or institutional users of energy, world-class expertise, only when needed. We have assembled a group of experienced professionals available to you at a cost that most could not afford to replicate internally. Our people are consultants, developers, builders, engineers, attorneys and financial managers with years of experience specifically in the energy industry, who are selectively deployed to bring maximum leverage on your energy opportunities.
Our clients will not hire us if the value we can create for them does not significantly exceed our cost. Give us the opportunity to discuss your situation or needs in a no-obligation meeting or conference call. Decide for yourself if Shoreline Energy Advisors can become a trusted adjunct to you, your organization or staff.
Let Shoreline Energy Advisors help take care of the "business within your business."