The European Association for the Promotion of Cogeneration (COGEN Europe) has produced a position paper, imploring heavy industry within the bloc to recognise the advantages of using the technology.
COGEN Europe says CHP can improve companies’ competitiveness and drive a European economic recovery through industry.
The body puts forward that CHP can also improve the efficiency and reduce the overall cost of the electricity system and urges policymakers to design EU energy, climate and industrial policies that work in harmony to harness the potential of cogeneration to deliver the energy that industry needs.
In Europe, industries are responsible for 43% of heat demand as they use large amounts of high-temperature heat in industrial processes, making it a suitable target for high-efficiency cogeneration.
The position paper which can be downloaded here points out that about half of the 106 GWe of cumulative CHP electrical capacity in the EU come from industry. This leads to saving the EU 15 Mtoe of fuel imports yearly and delivering 38 Mt of CO2 emission savings every year.
Energy costs account for a significant part of energy-intensive industries total operating costs. Thus, using CHP systems to provide both heat and electricity on site “allows an industry to reduce the cost of its heat by up to 30%, giving it a productivity advantage and improving its ability to compete and reinvest in its core process. Instead of simply using energy to produce heat, an industry can use cogeneration on site to gain greater control over its energy costs, boost productivity, and demonstrably reduce its carbon footprint”, the paper says.
COGEN Europe also pointed out that, within a suitable energy services market, industries that adopt CHP have much to offer electricity networks trying to incorporate new higher levels of renewables, as they offer firm capacity and their supply of electricity is predictable and reliable.