Energy efficiency means using less energy to provide the same level of energy output, service or product. For example, insulating a home allows a building to use less heating and cooling energy to achieve and maintain a comfortable temperature. Installing LED lighting, fluorescent lighting or natural skylight windows reduces the amount of energy required to get the same level of illumination compared to using traditional incandescent light bulbs. The phrase “energy efficiency” is often used to describe any kind of energy saving measure, though technically it should be distinguished from energy conservation. Improving energy efficiency is generally achieved by adopting a more efficient technology or production process, or by applying commonly accepted methods to reduce energy losses.
There are different reasons to improve energy efficiency. Energy efficiency reduces energy cost and may lead to saving money on electricity bills. Energy efficiency is also seen as a solution to greenhouse gas emissions. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), improved energy efficiency in buildings, industrial processes and transportation could reduce the world’s energy need by 33% by 2050. It will also help control global emissions of greenhouse gases. Energy efficiency is key to ensuring safe, reliable, affordable and sustainable energy system for the future.
Standard Organization of Nigeria to Promote Energy Efficiency
In recognizing the importance of energy efficiency, the Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON) launched an energy efficiency label. The label guides Nigerians on the amount of energy consumed by air conditioners, lamps and refrigerators. The label will also guide manufacturers and importers on appliances allowed for sale in Nigeria. The SON label will make sure goods manufactured in Nigeria meet MEP standard. This makes them more viable on the international market.
With this label, SON will help electricity consumers make informed decisions when purchasing electric appliances. Electric consumers can purchase appliances that reduce the amount of money spent on electricity bills as the label provides information on an appliance’s energy consumption. The label also rates an appliance electricity efficiency on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being the worst and 5 the best. The higher the energy efficiency, the lower your electricity bill.
SON has also launched the Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS), this coupled with the energy efficiency label are steps taken by Nigeria to promote energy efficiency. These steps are taken by Nigeria as one of the signatories to the climate change treaty to ensure that measures are in place to comply with policies that will reduce energy consumption and reduce the emission of greenhouse gases.
Promoting Energy efficiency also promotes efficient energy management. This can be helpful to DisCos and to the customers. When energy is efficiently managed, there will be more energy for distribution across the grid. This means more access to energy for everyone.