The Belgian electricity market is in constant evolution. As both society and government move towards more renewables in the energy mix, new challenges are bound to arise. The physical nature of the majority of renewable energy sources (wind, solar, hydro,…) implies they are not as controllable as other sources of energy. When there is no wind, there is no power to be harnessed from wind. This uncontrollability is largely due to the simple fact that there are no realistic ways — yet — to store energy in large amounts. As long as we are unable to store energy in an economically viable way, the combined demand of all companies and households in Belgium at any given time during the day cannot exceed supply (the total sum of all electricity originating from windmills, gas-fired plants, nuclear installations, solar panels, imported energy, etc.).
As governments are constantly modifying the applicable rules and regulations, it is becoming increasingly difficult for companies to predict their energy-related costs. On the other hand, however, new technical evolutions (in terms of measurement, smart grids and load balancing for example) are creating new opportunities for companies to optimise their energy needs.
In the face of these challenges and opportunities, the Total Cost of Energy indicator (TCE) has been developed: a powerful tool designed to help you tackle your company’s energy challenges.
Whether your organisation relies on energy simply for heating and lighting your offices or for more heavy-duty industrial processes, energy management is an essential part of your operational and even strategic management. It is therefore important to integrate every aspect with a potential impact on your total P&L within a comprehensive energy strategy.
And that is where the Total Cost of Energy (TCE) model comes in. To help you map all these elements into an effective strategy to minimise costs and maximise your competitive edge.
The TCE is basically a construction of all the elements that a company can/should consider when making decisions regarding its energy needs. It lists elements from the pure raw energy source, the time of buying, security of supply, energy and cost saving measures and a lot more.
I firmly believe that when companies look towards energy as an integrated and strategic asset, they are able to save a lot of money, whilst still creating a more sustainable energy landscape.
Disclaimer: The author is Marketing Innovation & Transformation manager for a EDF Luminus, the major challenger on the Belgian Energy market.