The China Post news staff
TAIPEI, Taiwan — Representatives of Taiwan’s Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) have declared that they are the ones best suited to lead the nation in a drive to reduce electricity consumption, in the wake of an announcement made after Premier Jiang Yi-huah earlier stated that the nation needs to reduce it’s energy usage.
The Taiwan Forum for Economy, Energy and Environment, hosted by the Taiwan Institute for Sustainable Energy (TAISE), recently discussed the topic “Challenges of an ESCO Industry Upgrade” as part of a larger trend in energy savings. Chairman Eugene Chien (簡又新) acted as the meeting’s host and discussed possible ways of saving energy with guests, according to a TAISE press release. Chien mentioned that raising energy efficiency ratios is a great deal faster and costs less money than the use of renewable energy or carbon capture. The new priority should be how to achieve energy and carbon emissions reductions through the development and upgrading of the ESCO industry. Taiwan Research Institute President Wu Tsai-yi also pointed out that upgrading current technology in the ESCO industry can smash the bottleneck in energy usage and bring in energy savings, thereby reducing the government’s fiscal burden among other benefits. On the other hand, Taiwan Power Company (Taipower) should make use of its key role to match ESCO operators with energy users and promote the advanced meter infrastructure (AMI) initiative so as to further strengthen existing trends in energy conservation, stated the TAISE. Need to Raise Funds Taiwan Association of Energy Service Companies President Yu Teng-yaw said that due to limited funds and the small size of companies, it is hard for domestic ESCO operators to expand their market. He suggested that “energy saving” should be a keystone in the nation’s promotion policies and an “ESCO Revolving Fund” should be set up to solve the regular problems that ESCOs face when operating or expanding their operations. Taiwan Energy Service Association President Chen Hui-jiunn proposed that, as cloud technologies are constantly changing, development of ESCO cloud energy services should proceed in three steps. These would be saving costs, saving energy and lastly electrical safety. These steps should be taken in order to scale up the prosperous development of the energy technology service industry. Third Party Assessment On the financing end, First Bank President Chou Po-chiao pointed out that lack of an impartial third-party assessment organization and the results of energy conservation being hard to recognize, industry capital and revenue do not match up. A clear return on investment is a problem encountered by the ESCO industry when applying for financing. Shinfox President Wilson Hu, who has been developing the ESCO industry across the Taiwan Strait for some time, pointed out that the different policies on the two sides of the strait have led to differing investment trends. The mainland Chinese central government treats performance in energy conservation as a standard in gauging the political achievements of a region. As such, local governments give financial incentives to industries that save energy and form policies such as specific assistance, tax favors and more to support them. This is also why Chinese corporations are more active in carrying out energy saving and carbon reduction measures, which in turn results in a bigger market.