EUSEW18: The intelligent use of energy goes beyond energy efficiency

While the EU Sustainable Energy Week has become a traditional opportunity for the association to have a say, its edition in 2018 has been the first for APPLiA.

The ambitious title of this year event – “Clean Energy 4.0: Designing a New Era for All Europeans Together” – united the home appliance sector, energy regulators, the International Energy Agency (IEA), market players driving decentralised energy solutions and other key players together to look at how to transform the energy market and bring more benefit to European citizens. By keeping in mind that the Clean Energy package will be finalised within a short time, the panel put forward examples on how to digitalise and decarbonise Europe. 

“What is there beyond Energy efficiency?”, started with a rhetorical question Marco Signa representing APPLiA and the European Heating Industry (EHI). “The answer is intelligent use of energy”, he said by adding that smart appliances could match the offer of clean energy from renewable sources with demand from household products, shave consumption peaks on the grid by shifting consumption with no impact on consumer’s comfort or prevent black-out by temporarily pausing energy consuming.

Signa further reminded to the public about APPLiA’s smart demo, presented during the EU Sustainable Energy Week last year when washing machines and a dishwasher from different manufacturers were able to communicate with the electricity grid, through one single energy manager. “Since last year, we have made a lot of progress. We have gone beyond smart home appliances, to include also smart meters, electric vehicles and very importantly: heating, ventilation and air-conditioning devices”, Marco Signa said.

“Is it a reality or a daydream?”, asked in the same spirit, the executive director of smartEn (Smart Energy Europe) and added a few examples of demand response flexibility already happening across Europe. 

On his turn, George Kamiya from IEA drew the attention with his 10 “no-regrets policy recommendations” within which digital expertise, a robust verifiable data, flexibility into policies to accommodate new technologies and overall system benefits took the top places of his list. “Digital technology, such as smart appliances, lighting & smart meters can reduce electricity demand by 10% in 2040”, the energy expert underlined. 

“We must join our forces and work together each with a unique perspective on how to seize the opportunities”,  emphasised Orgalime’s Director-General, Malte Lohan and concluded his speech by saying that when it comes to innovation, “Europe must be in the driving seat”.