Condugo, a specialist in energy management with offices in Antwerp and Brussels, has developed a solution tailored to large-scale industry with its Energy Hub software. It should enable companies in this sector to meet the European climate and energy targets (Green Deal) and to come through this transition unscathed. For many companies, this represents a major challenge. After a rigorous European selection process, the Flemish Agency for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (Vlaio) has just awarded support to Condugo for the start-up of a €1 million pilot project within the (petro)chemical sector. Borealis will already cooperate in this project.
The greatest challenge of the coming decades will undoubtedly be trying to mitigate climate change. Concepts such as "Energy Policy Agreement" and "Emission Trading System" have been created to monitor and reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions in order to achieve increasingly stringent climate targets. They reward companies that take measures to reduce their consumption and strictly monitor the further annual reductions.
"Especially for the large process industry, this is not straightforward. Most companies have executed the most obvious energy savings measures over the past years. Now everyone gets stuck in the next steps. These require a much deeper understanding of how the energy flows on a site behave exactly, and that is rarely available," says Xavier De Moor, ceo of Condugo.
That's why Condugo developed the Energy Hub in recent years. This software offers industrial companies complete transparency into their energy flows, enabling them to focus on reducing emissions, increasing efficiency and making more targeted and sustainable investments. The first version was developed with major players from the pharmaceutical and manufacturing industries, among others.
Last year, Condugo launched a project to make the Energy Hub also suitable for the (petro)chemical industry. In this environment, complex process and energy flows play the leading role par excellence. After a rigorous selection process, the proposal was awarded a 'Seal of Excellence' by the European Commission for its innovative character and major impact on the climate. Vlaio then decided to grant Condugo support for 2 years.
This €1 million pilot project will further expand the capabilities of the Energy Hub software, provide an investment toolkit, and test everything out on a number of pilot sites. The aim of the project is to enable the (petro)chemical industry to meet all climate targets in a sustainable, convincing and economically responsible manner. With Borealis, Condugo already found a first partner to cooperate in the pilot project.
"We have been working for years on sustainability and emissions at our plants. You can see the results in the continuous improvements. To keep them going, we now need to get a much more detailed grasp of our energy flows. Condugo's pilot project offers us that opportunity, which is why we are happy to be a pilot site," says Thibaud Van Lindt, energy manager for Belgium and the Netherlands at Borealis.
"With this project we have the key to open the black box that a chemical plant often is. The partnership with an innovative company like Borealis is an important step. We want to build on that, but our ambitions reach further," emphasizes Xavier De Moor.
Condugo is looking for additional partners to act as pilot sites for this project for at least one year. In concrete terms, this involves analysing energy flows and systematically following them up.
"Participants receive a lot of added value in the form of personalized analyses, permanent follow-up by our specialists and access to state-of-the-art software. In return, we ask for regular input and feedback on the functioning of the platform, further improvements and possibilities to integrate it into existing systems. It should be a win-win for all parties," says Xavier De Moor.