Global building efficiency and power solutions company Johnson Controls has provided more than $4,6-billion in energy- and water-efficiency savings guarantees to assist customers in reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by ten-million tons since 2000.
The company’s customers have saved over $32-billion in energy costs since 1990, and have reduced air pollution by 352-million tons. This equates, says the company, to removing the emissions from four-million medium- sized cars or planting over 11,74-million hectares of trees.
“While Johnson Controls has not undertaken any renewable-energy projects in South Africa yet, it has been involved in energy efficiency projects, such as the absorption chillers that it installed for steel producer ArcelorMittal South Africa, which produce cold water, for production purposes, from waste heat,” says Johnson Controls systems and services GM Neil Cameron.
He explains that the company aims to always make renewable-energy technology part of a complete energy efficiency solution that includes the use of energy as efficiently as possible before adding on-site renewable energy.
“On a time-phasing basis, energy efficiency systems will have greater impact on climate change than renewable energy. Although it is becoming con-siderably more sustainable than it was two years ago, renewable technology is still very expensive with long payback periods. Companies will not use money from profits to finance energy solutions,” he says.
He adds that limited capital availability for investments as a result of the global economic crisis and the unattractive payback are two of the most common barriers to renewable-energy roll-out.