Danfoss recently joined the ninth annual Energy Efficiency Global Forum (EE Global) to tackle the productivity and profitability of energy efficiency. The invitation-only event, May 11-12 in Washington, was attended by nearly 500 energy-efficiency industry leaders from around the world.

John Galyen, president of Danfoss North America, took part in the plenary panel, “Doubling Energy Productivity through Government Leadership.” He was joined by Dr. Fatih Birol, executive director of International Energy Agency; Kateri Callahan, president of Alliance to Save Energy; Mark Kenber, CEO of The Climate Group; and Rachel Kyte, CEO of Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All). The panelists discussed international efforts to advance energy efficiency and double energy productivity.

“Buildings represent nearly 40% of energy consumption and account for about one-third of global greenhouse gas emissions, and, therefore, buildings are vital to achieving our climate and energy goals. To do so, it’s going to require a holistic approach to smart, connected buildings,” said Galyen. “In the short term, we need to implement progressive policies that encourage the use of available, proven energy-efficiency technologies, low-energy building design, and building renovations that can achieve 25% to 50% reductions in energy demand from new and existing buildings. This includes technologies like variable speed, energy recovery, combined heat and power, and renewables.”

Galyen went on to explain the importance of integrated systems.

“In the long-term, the greatest potential for improving energy productivity will come from smart and sustainable cities with connected infrastructure where water, wastewater, heating, cooling, and electricity are integrated into one system,” he said.

Galyen also noted that the U.S. government, as the country’s largest building owner, can lead by example with its own building stock, and can make it mandatory for tenants and building owners to disclose a building’s energy use and cost — helping to increase awareness, put consumers in command of their energy consumption, and encourage energy-efficiency renovation. Galyen illustrated three examples — one from the U.S., one from Europe, and one from China — where Danfoss says its solutions were used to achieve significant savings:

• Replacement of 150-ton chiller at U.S. courthouse with chiller with variable speed, magnetic bearing compressors

• Installation of variable frequency drives and use of CHP at wastewater facility in Aarhus, Denmark

• District heating installation in city of Anshan, China

Connected systems were also the topic of focus during one of EE Global’s 16 Executive Dialogue sessions. Mark Menzer, director of public affairs for Danfoss North America, moderated the panel. Panelists included Ralph DiNola, CEO of New Buildings Institute; Ken Smith, president and CEO of District Energy St. Paul; Rob Thornton, president and CEO of International District Energy Association; Jim Freihaut, professor of architectural engineering at Pennsylvania State University; and Fleming Voetmann, head of public affairs and sustainability at Danfoss.

The panelists noted that there are tremendous savings to be realized through the integrated design of efficient systems. Quoting a report from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Menzer summarized saying, “A transition to district energy systems…could contribute as much as 58% of the CO2 emissions needed by the energy sector to meet the COP21 pledges.”

To showcase its commitment to doubling energy productivity, Danfoss announced during EE Global that it would join EP100. EP100 is an initiative of The Climate Group initiative which convenes leading companies that voluntarily commit to double energy productivity in their facilities.