Energy Management during Covid-19 – Have concerns for climate change paused for a while?

Covid-19 has inflicted havoc in every segment. World Economy is witnessing a gargantuan low with sharply contracted economic activity.

Be it healthcare, travel, hospitality, education or even our own lifestyles, the pandemic has touched each one of us in an unprecedented way.
There have been profound changes in the way we function in our personal space, professional space as well as social space, and unfortunately the overall scenario is very grey.

As noted by the McKinsey Global Institute in Safeguarding Lives and Livelihoods, “Daily reports of increasing infections and deaths across the world has raised our anxiety and, in cases of personal loss, plugged us into grief. There is uncertainty about tomorrow; about the health and safety of our families, friends and loved ones; and about our ability to live the lives we love.”

However, amidst this tumult we still managed to see a silver lining, and that happens to be the enthralling fact of the pandemic. It is the unexpected positive impact that the outbreak has had on the environment. The ever-rising climate concerns which took foreground in every leading congregation of the world over the last one decade, has astoundingly been tackled to a large extent, all by itself, without even any distinctive measures by the policy makers and other relevant bodies. The pandemic played a catalyst in regaining the environment that we were losing at an uncontainable pace.  

Amidst the gloom, it surely was a happy picture when Satellite images from the European Space Agency were circulated, depicting reduced pollution level in major cities across continents. With factories shut, minimal transportation and empty office spaces, we are able to breathe clean air.

Italy impact. Source: The European Space Agency

Other side of the pandemic and the role of digitisation

Whilst it sounds like a great relief on one hand, on the other side however, we are left with two very critical facets to ponder on; 

  1. How sustainable is it and what happens to our environment post-covid?
  2. Realising the role and power of digitisation in navigating through both these predicaments – the pandemic, and concerns around climate change

We understand the current uplifted face of the environment is not a result of a concerted effort. The world is paying a colossal price for it, in the form of economic contraction, loss of jobs, livelihood and most tragically, loss of loved ones. 

In the current circumstances, the essence lies in the ability to build resilience. 

We are fortunate enough to have been living in an era that was already witnessing a substantial transformation through digitisation. Even in predicting and modeling the outbreak, a report by World Economic Forum, clearly highlights how state government and healthcare industry’s dependency on technology has augmented multifold. It states that in the ongoing covid-19 pandemic, we are witnessing three major occurrences across the globe:

1. Wider acceptance of online services;

2. A humongous requirement for internet services for conventional industries, and;

3. Boosted connectivity among diverse types of industries

Taking a cue from the scenario, for businesses and industries at large, it may be the right time to rethink and accelerate their digitisation strategy in-order to build resilience and optimise business processes. Technology advancements like cloud, edge control, big data and AI applications, infuse a boost to industries to develop and build new and broader business models. They also prepare industries with predictive measures for unforeseen crisis and global downturns caused by pandemic diseases and environmental calamities.

Leveraging Data and Digitisation to combat climate concerns

As noted by Harvard Business Review, in today’s digitised economy, the ability to use data represents a real and essential competitive advantage. Albeit, 80% of the work in becoming data-driven, is to be able to integrate your data, and make it available at the right time and at the right place, to meet the needs of your company as a whole. 

In both the cases, whether for containing the pandemic or combating climate concerns, the reliance on data has witnessed a never-before surge in the recent times. 

Specifically, if we consider climate concerns and the critical need to curb carbon footprint of your enterprise, the focus needs to be on making energy usage visible. By harnessing the power of technology, we are not only able to optimise energy usage but also inculcate better decision making on energy management and energy procurement patterns. Furthermore, Digital energy management feeds the data so that they can alert operators to potential issues, expected downtime and related cost implications. 

With industries working on reduced occupancy and reduced production levels, this could be an ideal time to prepare yourself, work low scale and analyse results. To recover and thrive post-covid, industries need to draw up strategies for better energy portfolio management and energy portfolio risk management, by focusing at improving their procurement strategies. 

Forbes Technology Council recognizes that to “establish a single source of truth” from enterprise data, requires overcoming the data silos within your company. This means a culture change by driving “collaboration across business units, departments and levels of hierarchy and establishment of trust and accountability.”

Our agenda at Enkumo

At Enkumo, we aim at enabling our customers with a secure data platform for enhanced portfolio visibility. Enkumo aids in aggregating, storing and managing end-to-end energy data, achieving superior clarity and transparency across the portfolio. Our agenda is to gather the vast amounts of data generated in an organization which are scattered across sites, countries, commodities, files, all in one platform, as one single source of truth. 

Our platform empowers our customers to control the company’s past, present, future, energy data, irrespective of energy supplier, consultants or number of modifications. Finally, it generates valuable insights out of the entire portfolio with customisable dashboards, advanced chart elements, prebuilt indicators and custom reporting. This data can be automatically shared within the business or with external stakeholders, including different layers of user access.

Finally, pollution levels will return when the coronavirus ebbs—and in some cases may come back with a vengeance. Neither this outbreak nor climate hazards can be defied without true global coordination and cooperation.