Assessing Implementation of Energy Efficiency Practices and Industrial Energy Management: A Case Study of Kenyan Industries
Akoth Okwako, Jacinta
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The government of Kenya in Vision 2030 aims to turn the nation into a higher middle-income economy which is driven by industrial transformation. In abide to achieve this, a number of programmes have been initiated with the recent one known as The Kenya Industrial Transformation Programme. The Kenya Industrial Transformation Programme has its foundations in Vision 2030 but its main focus is on the manufacturing sector. It provides a road map which can be used to enhance manufacturing and value addition, stimulation of exports and subsequently transform the Kenyan economy. To achieve this, there is greater need for the nation to generated more electricity since most industries are energy intensive. In a country like Kenya where sometimes generated electricity is never due to issues like drought which occurs almost on yearly basis and the electricity tariff is very expensive (USD cents 15/KWH), the best solution in this case is for the industries to invest in the adoption of energy efficiency measure in order to reduce the cost of energy use. Adoption of energy efficiency and management will also help the industries to reduce the greenhouse gases emitted to the environment hence helps to take care of climate change issues. As way of helping the industries to use their energy efficiently, the government of Kenya has been sensitizing the high energy consumers to adopt energy efficiency and management measures and the benefits associated with the uptake of energy efficient technologies in their facilities. To show their commitment in the journey of energy efficiency, the government through ERC passed a regulation known as The Energy Management Regulation of 2012. This regulation requires the industries to integrate energy management measures into their system as well as undertake an energy audit once in three years then consider to implement at least 50% of the recommendations provided by the auditors. This explorative and quantitative study was conducted with an aim of assessing the implementation of energy efficiency and management in industries with main focus on the Kenya manufacturing industries. The study specifically focused on the industries’ energy management systems, their sources of information, currently adopted energy efficient measures, driving forces for improving energy efficiency and barriers encountered while implementing energy efficiency. In order to gain an understanding on these issues, structured questionnaires were administered to the industries physically and face to face interviews was also conducted in some industries where the concerned people dealing with energy issues were available. The study was conducted in major towns of Kenya namely Nairobi, Mombasa, Thika and Kisumu in order to get a broader understanding and a true picture regarding the implementation of energy efficiency in Kenyan manufacturing industries. Out of the 50 questionnaires which were administered, a total of 31 were received. The surveyed industries were from 8 different categories namely food and beverage (33%), leather and foot (9%), paper and board (10), chemical and allied (5), plastic and rubber (5%), building, mining and construction which were mainly cement companies (14%), metal and allied (14%) and pharmaceutical and medical equipment (10%). The results revealed that there exist energy efficiency opportunities in the surveyed industries and out of the 31 industries surveyed, only 3 of these industries had not complied to the Energy Management Regulation of 2012. Most industries under survey had metered their electricity to the whole site and building level. Energy audit reports was considered to be the most effective source of information on energy efficiency among the others. The main driving force was found to be cost reduction by lowered cost of energy which is considered to be a market related; it was seen as a way of increasing their profit margins. The highly ranked energy barrier from the study was high initial cost of adopting energy efficient technology. A number of recommendations were drawn from the study including introduction of industries’ in-house awards to recognise their staff who have helped in improving energy efficiency and management.