The Energy Hierarchy

The HVAC industry has evolved over the years. The energy crisis in the ’70 gives rise to the need for energy efficiency. In the ’80, the HVAC industry emphasised the mandates to reduce installed capacities and further improve efficiencies. It followed in the ’90 with a greater interest in renewable energy. In 2005 Philip Wolfe first proposed the Energy Hierarchy, bring the past decades together for a blueprint into the future. The Energy Hierarchy prioritised the approach to assist our progress towards a more sustainable energy system and utilisation.

The topmost priority of the Energy Hierarchy is to reduce consumption by mitigating waste. We need to be LEAN. The second most important priority is to improve efficiency, doing more with less energy to further reduce energy consumption. We need to be KEEN. The third priority of the Energy Hierarchy is to utilise renewable energy when we satisfy the first two priorities. Only then we may be GREEN.

So how do we adopt the Energy Hierarchy moving forward from 2020, the noise is loud, the loud cry on climate change for having only several years to the point of no return. Do we just abandon the top two most important priorities KEEN and LEAN and jump straight to GREEN? To be Greenwashed along side many people and corporations? To be seen to plonk on solar PV panels onto the roof just to appease the alarmists agenda? To support Carbon Tax?

We should remained steadfast embracing the Energy Hierarchy. HVAC systems is known to use a great deal of energy which most of it is currently from fossil fuels. Just imagine for a minute the number of fossil fueled power plants we may decommission and the number of renewable energy farm we do not need to build if we remain true to the Energy Hierarchy?

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