Energy Optimization Needs New Initiatives

Energy Optimization Needs New InitiativesEnergy Optimization Needs New Initiatives

Optimizing energy generation and consumption is definitely one of the key factors to develop commercial potentials and ensure long-term economic prosperity of the country, the head of Environment and Energy Optimization Headquarters at the Vice Presidency for Scientific and Technological Affairs said on Wednesday.

“Energy optimization initiatives cannot be fulfilled unless cutting-edge knowledge-based businesses are developed. Moreover, high energy-efficient technologies should be used in newly-built business,” Yadollah Sabouhi was also quoted as saying by IRNA.

Sabouhi said oil and natural gas account for 95% of energy resources in the country.

The official noted that annual energy optimization potential in the world stands at a massive 7 billion tons of oil, which is equivalent to 760 million barrels—almost 30 times the energy used in Iran.

“Implementation of plans to save this amount of fossil fuel can not only help the economy thrive, but also prevent environmental degradation," he said.

Sabouhi noted that the more ecological pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions are curbed, the better standards of life people will enjoy, which will also lead to sustainable economic development.

"There is a direct link between energy optimization and reduction of air pollution. With regard to Iran, the significance of this link is more crucial."

According to the official, establishing knowledge-based businesses and undertaking new initiatives are necessary to boost energy efficiency.

"The energy optimization headquarters is making serious endeavors to create new businesses with the aim of activating local, national and international potentials in the economic sector to optimize the use of energy resources," he said.

Seyyed Mehdi Mirsalehi, an official at the Ministry of Industries, Mining and Trade, said a joint research project will be undertaken with  the United Nations Industrial Development Organization for promoting the efficient use of energy.

"The goal is to find ways of reducing the carbon footprint in key sectors, namely oil, gas and petrochemicals," he said.

Whereas in developing countries an increase in greenhouse emissions is a sign of a growing economy, the same cannot be said about Iran, where emissions have increased despite years of economic stagnation, which indicates the enormous cost and waste of energy.

Buildings account for over 35% of Iran’s total energy consumption.

Many, including Mirsalehi, blame Iran’s high energy consumption on the fact that the sector, especially electricity, is heavily subsidized. In other words, consumers pay a fraction of the real cost. This has not only led to more energy use, but it has also taken a toll on the Energy Ministry’s revenues.

According to Energy Minister Hamid Chitchian, “If electricity was sold at real prices, the ministry would be able to not only settle its unpaid bills ($11 billion) to the private sector, but also implement crucial development plans for the industry.”