As global awareness of the consequences of climate concerns increases and these concerns are translated into regulatory initiatives, it is slowly becoming imperative for stakeholders in property and facility management to undertake steps to position themselves in front of these concerns. By doing so, not only do future regulatory initiatives have less of an impact on daily operations but implementation of energy and carbon management policies and plans concerning such, have the potential for the generation of significant cost effectiveness and efficiency savings over the life cycle of any project. Thus property stakeholders who recognize the importance of energy and carbon management in facility management benefit directly in terms of efficiency, cost savings and an increasingly positive public perception.
Facility Management: Energy
For property stakeholders, in the United Arab Emirates, to fully understand the enormity of the importance of energy and carbon management, a necessary review of the numbers concerning energy consumption and generation is required. The United Arab Emirates is subdivided into seven Emirates, with Dubai being the largest with over thirty five percent of the population. Therefore the numbers are focused on Dubai, but are representative of the UAE as a whole.
According to DEWA, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, the annual energy production in installed capacity is 9,646 megawatts with a peak demand of 6,637 megawatts in 2012. The latest numbers for 2013 show in increase in peak demand of 220 megawatts for a total of 6,857 megawatts, a 3.3 percent increase over 2012. Considering that the 2012 numbers represent 13,281 kilowatt hours per person in terms of per capita consumption, the increase in 2013 numbers will represent a corresponding increase in the per capita numbers as well. Thus illustrating an overall increase in costs associated with energy production and consumption in Dubai and possibly the UAE as a whole. This, despite implementation of energy initiatives by DEWA to reduce consumption by 2030. The ramification for property stakeholders is clear, as consumption increases and costs associated with increase production and consumption increase, these cost increases will be passed on to the consumer, reducing the overall bottom line of the property stakeholder and only by implementing plans and policies that reduce consumption and the overall facility energy footprint can these increases be mitigated.
Facility Management: Carbon
Unless otherwise stated, the carbon numbers are harder to quantify due to the nature and variety of carbon sources. For the UAE, and Dubai in specific, the numbers are correlated with the numbers for that of energy production and consumption. As a net exporter of fossil fuels, there is a tendency to count exports as inclusive of the overall carbon foot print of the UAE, as this has little to no impact on property stakeholders, this has been left out.
The United Nations has listed the UAE as having one of the largest carbon foot prints in the world with over 236.2 million metric tons produced in 2012 alone. These same numbers represent 10.6 gha or global hectares per person, as noted by the Abu Dhabi Environmental Agency. Of these numbers, over fifty seven percent is from household consumption of energy, according to the UAE Ecological Footprint Initiative. While a reduction in carbon emissions were noted for 2013, this reduction came mainly from industrial sources and not the primary motivator of the UAE carbon production, households. Given the direct correlation with energy consumption, property stakeholders benefit by the introduction of policies that address both energy consumption and carbon production. What this means in direct terms, is policies and energy management plans that specifically target energy consumption and subsequently carbon production, cost savings can be realized and potential cost increases can be avoided.
Both the carbon numbers and the energy numbers clearly illustrate why proper facility management must make energy and carbon management a priority. What the numbers do not show is the esoteric advantages inherent with the importance of energy and carbon management. Property stakeholders, who are buying or selling, can gain by demonstrating their commitment to the importance of carbon and energy management through an increasingly positive perception of their commitment to the principles enshrined in properly prepared and implemented carbon and energy controls. In order for this to occur it is imperative that during any process of purchasing or selling of the stakes in property, that companion companies who are experienced in taking advantage of this public perception as well as understanding the importance of managing the property in terms of carbon and energy management be utilized. Only by engaging the properly experienced and knowledgeable companies, that are experts in energy and carbon management, can the benefits previously mentioned be realized.